Slovak company nettle.ai, which is focused on solutions in the area of conversational technologies using artificial intelligence, has received a significant investment in the volume of €1 million from Crowdberry investors and the Venture to Future Fund (VFF) investment fund. The company will use the investment for its further growth, marketing and completion of the product portfolio.
nettle.ai was established in 2018 and already has companies like Eset, Samsung, 365.banka and Jaguar Land Rover using its AI in the form of virtual assistants (chatbots) to communicate with customers. It’s found applications in the entertainment and gaming industries, tourism, ticket sales, when collecting debts, and also in the marketing or support of the HR departments of companies.
nettle.ai is also a partner of Google Business Messages, working with the technology giant on multiple solutions for the introduction of new SMS standards (known as RCS communication), and is additionally a partner of the European Robotic Centre.
“We appreciate the confidence that these investors have shown in us and see the investment as a significant advancement in our development. We want to build on our competitive advantage, which is our own software; the ability to design and implement a functional chatbot tailored to the needs of the client; and our unique partnerships. Thanks to the investment, we will start looking at comprehensive vertically-oriented conversation interfaces that enable us to scale projects, in addition to the project deliveries of chatbots, mailbots and voicebots. A chatbot for a seller of automobiles and a chatbot for the collection of debts are some of the first such “boxed” products we have created,” said Andrej Greguš, one of the founders of nettle.ai.
The startup states that by 2023, some 2.5 billion hours of customer service will be saved worldwide each year, which will bring savings amounting to $11 billion (around €9.2 billion) for the retail, bank and health insurance sectors. Oracle’s Survey of 800 Global CXOs shows that more than 80% of companies will introduce their own chatbots for communication in the near future, with Gartner showing that companies spend on average 50% more on virtual assistants annually than on mobile applications. “Conversational technologies bring considerable savings and streamlining for companies, for which quality customer service these days is a question of prestige or reputation. nettle.ai has the advantage of being a small firm that, thanks to its technological/business background, can very flexibly react to the requirements of large companies,” added Michal Ondrišek from Crowdberry.
“The creation of algorithms using AI and machine learning is leading to huge advancements in this rapidly-developing sector. The result of the constant progress in this area is that AI is no longer a futuristic technology, but is increasingly integrated into all aspects of our lives. Chatbots are also one of the applications of AI and machine learning, and they are rapidly becoming an essential part of the effectively-implemented processes in every organisation. This is precisely the area developed by nettle.ai, which has become one of the most innovative companies oriented on the development of chatbots and natural language processing. We see potential in the company and we believe that in the coming years it will bring new solutions that will quickly be adopted by modern-managed companies. The main goal of VFF, which is a joint initiative of Slovak Investment Holding, the European Investment Bank and the Ministry of Finance of the Slovak Republic, is to support investments into innovative companies,” said Matej Říha, the Chairman of the Board of the Venture to Future Fund.
nettle.ai has received several significant awards, including the Best AI/ML Startup in Slovakia Award as part of the Central European Startup Awards in 2019. nettle.ai is also a qualified Google Cloud for Startups partner, thanks to which it has received support in the form of computing power in the value of €100K.