Snap, the parent company for the popular social media platform, Snapchat, has been making acquisitions to boost features of its social app. The company recently announced a milestone of reaching 249 million daily active users which are mainly young adults and teenagers. To keep this huge amount of users engaged, Snapchat has been making acquisitions to gain IP for new features and revenue streams.
It has been reported that Snap bought Voca.ai, an AI startup that builds voice assistants for customer support services; it is a virtual agent that makes conversations with users to answer simple customer support queries. When the customer needs help with a complex issue, the AI assistant hands over to a real-human agent. The Israeli startup, which also has offices in New York, had raised $6 million in October 2019. It has also participated in accelerator programs of financial giants Citi and Mastercard. Its reported that Snap acquired the startup for $70 Million. Voca.ai’s team of 40 will be joining Snap.
“7 out of 10 customers still prefer speaking with an agent,” Voca notes on its website. “Voca offers natural, human-like conversations that will leave you wondering if you spoke with a virtual or human agent.” It processes more than 2 million calls per month from clients, some of which include Toshiba and First Class Capital.
The acquisition comes just a few months after Snap acquired AI Factory, a computer vision and AI startup from Ukraine. AI Factory was instrumental for Snapchat’s new Cameo feature which uses your selfie to replace faces of people in videos, a fun way to make GIFs for sharing. It is not immediately clear where Voca.ai will fit into Snapchat’s future, but some predictions say that it could be built into Snap’s Spectacles as a form of voice commands.