Kasisto, which uses artificial intelligence technology behind its virtual assistant banking services, announced it has received a minority investment from DBS Bank. Kasisto was spun out of SRI International in 2014 and has received $2.25 million in funding from New York Angels, Two Sigma Investments and Wells Fargo Startup Accelerator, among others, according to data from Thomson Reuters. Kasisto also announced it is powering the virtual assistant in digibank, a mobile-only bank in India.
AI-Driven Virtual Assistant from Kasisto Powers India’s First Mobile-Only Bank
Asian banking innovator DBS Bank makes strategic investment in Kasisto
New York, NY – April 26, 2016 – Kasisto, a startup that aims to transform the consumer banking experience with artificial intelligence, announced today that its KAI platform is powering the virtual assistant in digibank, a new mobile-only bank launched in India. Additionally, digibank creator DBS Bank has taken a minority stake in Kasisto. The Kasisto investment and digibank launch are both part of the DBS mission to shape the future of banking.
Kasisto, which spun out of SRI in 2014, is powering a new generation of banking services that are mobile and accessible in ways people communicate each day. Its conversational AI platform powers customizable virtual assistants that enable banks to engage with their customers.
digibank – which speaks to what Infosys co-founder and futurist Nandan Nilekani calls the “WhatsApp moment in banking ” – was officially unveiled in India today. It breaks new ground, being a completely paperless, signatureless and branchless experience. Significantly, digibank customers can open an account quickly and effortlessly using just their Aadhaar, a biometrics-enabled ID, at any of DBS’ partner network of cafes across India.
With deep financial knowledge, including dozens of banking intents and millions of banking sentences, the KAI virtual assistants in digibank can anticipate and answer thousands of customer questions. It can also help customers perform banking transactions in real-time. This is like having a banking specialist at one’s beck and call. Kasisto’s agile, modern platform and tools eased the time to develop, pilot and deploy digibank’s cutting edge, AI-driven features.
Said DBS CEO Piyush Gupta, “With the advent of technology, banking as we know it is being completely transformed. digibank places an entire bank in our customers’ hands, freeing up their valuable time, and allowing them to ‘Live More, Bank Less.’ For DBS, digibank is also a potential gamechanger, enabling us to go beyond the confines of a brick and mortar network to extend our reach in huge geographies like India. As a leading bank in Asia, DBS believes in shaping the future of banking. With Kasisto’s conversational AI platform, we are embracing technologies that can make banking more interactive and intuitive for customers.”
“DBS is at the forefront of innovation in banking and a great example of the kind of massive change that is transforming the face of consumer banking,” said Zor Gorelov, CEO and co-founder of Kasisto. “It’s exciting to work with them on services designed for a new generation of banking consumers who think differently about money and expect a very different set of capabilities from their banks.”
Kasisto was founded in 2013 with the vision of helping consumers in everyday customer interactions through intelligent conversations on any device. Kasisto’s conversational platform offers enterprises a comprehensive technology stack including speech recognition, natural language understanding and generation, and artificial intelligence reasoning. As an SRI International spin-off, Kasisto leverages decades of research and development in artificial intelligence. Currently, Kasisto is enabling financial institutions to add virtual assistants and bots to their mobile and tablet offerings. With an emphasis on great user experience, Kasisto’s virtual assistants are made easy to implement, customize and maintain.
DBS is a leading financial services group in Asia, with over 280 branches across 18 markets. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, DBS has a growing presence in the three key Asian axes of growth: Greater China, Southeast Asia and South Asia. The bank’s capital position, as well as “AA-” and “Aa1” credit ratings, is among the highest in Asia-Pacific. DBS has been recognised for its leadership in the region, having been named “Asia’s Best Bank” by The Banker, a member of the Financial Times group, and “Best Bank in Asia-Pacific” by Global Finance. The bank has also been named “Safest Bank in Asia” by Global Finance for seven consecutive years from 2009 to 2015.