Patricia and Rob Randall to Present the Innovative "RIP Technique" for Box Configuration

March 15-17, 2020

At the INFORMS Optimization Society biennial conference in Greenville, SC, Princeton Consultants' Patricia and Rob Randall will discuss the Reciprocating Integer Programming technique (RIP), a new column generation approach that helped transform the operations of Birchbox, a trailbalzer in ecommerce box subscription. Patricia and Rob will review how Birchbox had used a mixed integer program (MIP) to determine the right number of configurations of boxes to meet the needs of its diverse subscriber base. When the business grew, the MIP took close to two days to solve with Gurobi, using close to 30 cores. Patricia and Rob will describe a reformulation of the problem and the development of RIP, which leverages the power of the Gurobi MIP solver in multiple ways in a column generation scheme, which led to a reduction in solve times to 5 to 10 minutes on an 8 core laptop.

For more information, visit the conference website.