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Olson Research was organized in June of 1970 to acquire assets and business relationships from a diverse and rapidly growing predecessor firm, Maryland Research and Consulting Associates, Inc. Olson Research chose a specialty target of financial modeling services to banking organizations.
The first contract to implement a financial planning model was with the Equitable Trust Company of Baltimore, MD, beginning in 1966. Given a budget projection, Equitable’s management asked: WHAT IF interest rates change? From that question, an Asset/Liability Management model evolved from paper and pencil spreadsheets into computerized simulations. Optimization, gap analysis, financial instrument optionality, rate shock simulations, and other risk analysis techniques have followed over the years.
At a professional banking meeting, Cliff Myers (founder of Sendero Corporation and competitor of Olson Research) introduced Ron Olson as the “Grandfather of A/L modeling.” Many competitors have emulated the Olson Model over the past 40 years.
Over the decades, banking changed, regulations changed, risk analysis techniques changed and computers changed. Olson Research has led the industry at every turn.
The early models were built for in-house computers, but by 1969 clients had converted to the use of nation-wide time sharing computers. The flexibility of the time sharing systems reigned supreme during the 1970’s, but high computer prices made the time sharing business vulnerable to the lower cost PCs. By the early 1980’s, capacity of PCs increased rapidly and local area networks (LANs) quickly followed. Before the end of the 20th Century, A/L Models had moved to the Internet.
From the beginning, Olson Research had four goals or philosophies: To provide a quality place to work for employees; to deliver a high level of practicality for customer service; to be a contributor to the education of financial managers; and to emphasize long term business survivability through technical and market research.
Today, Olson Research can count hundreds of satisfied employees and alumni; thousands of satisfied banks, credit unions, and savings and loan clients; tens of thousands of satisfied banking students; and millions of dollars spent on continuing research.
A new generation assumed responsibilities for our firm in March, 1999. Our goals are the same as before, and as we change with the times, our success continues.