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Kore.ai, a no-code automation platform designed for enterprise applications, today announced that it raised $50 million in a series C round led by Vistara Growth and PNC with participation from Next Equity Partners, Nicola Wealth, and Beedie Capital, along with $20 million in debt from Sterling National Bank. The funds, which bring Kore’s total raised to over $100 million to date, will be put toward expanding the company’s workforce while developing new product features, according to cofounder and CEO Raj Koneru.
In 2015, just 10% of organizations reported that they either already used automation technology or would be doing so in the near future. Fast forward to 2019, and that number rose to 37% — which means that more than one in three organizations are either using AI or have plans to do so. Indeed, according to a 2019 Salesforce survey, 1 in 4 sales teams currently use AI in their day-to-day work. Another source found that revenue grew by up to 5% for four in ten marketing and sales departments after their adoption of AI.
Orlando, Florida-based Kore, which was founded in 2013, provides internal and customer-facing workflow automation tools including “purpose-built” and “domain-trained” chatbots. Kore’s conversational voice and text assistants respond to and deflect queries, offering search tools for knowledge databases, IT support manuals, and more.
“Kore continues to make bold investments in its market-leading technology that enables organizations to discover new ways of engaging customers and ensuring enterprise-wide collaboration through exceptional conversational experience,” Koneru said in a previous press release.
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Kore’s platform allows companies to design, build, test, and deploy AI-powered virtual assistants and automation solutions. Beyond this, the startup recently launched SmartAssist, a contact center product with an integrated virtual assistant, desktop console, and workspace that enables customer service agents to manage conversations.
Kore claims to have automated over a billion interactions for more than 500,000 users at companies including eBay, PNC, Roche, Airbus, AT&T, and Cigna.
Kore’s success comes after the global conversational AI market reached $4.91 billion in value in 2020, according to Emergen Research. By the end of 2021, it’s predicted that over 50% of enterprises will spend more per annum on bots and chatbot creation than on traditional mobile app development. And by 2022, 75% to 90% of queries could be handled by bots as opposed to people, CNBC forecasts.
Kore competes with startups like Cognigy, a Düsseldorf, Germany-based company providing a low-code platform that enables customers to create text and voice virtual agents. There’s also Yellow.ai, whose AI-powered virtual assistants enable companies to resolve queries in over 100 languages and across more than 35 text and voice channels. Rasa’s open source framework brings AI assistants to life by providing the infrastructure and tools necessary for “robust” conversations. And Ada offers tools that helps companies develop their own automated customer service apps.
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