AI Business recently caught up with Jordi Torras, CEO and Founder of Inbenta.
Inbenta specialises in Natural Language Processing and Artificial Intelligence, and use this technology to help companies improve online relationships with their customers through intelligent search, chatbots and a powerful e-commerce search appliance.
Inbenta’s patented technology helps to greatly reduce incoming customer service emails, live chats and calls to call centres while increasing online conversions for industry-leading companies including Ticketmaster, CA Technologies and change.org. They also integrate with Zendesk, Salesforce, Facebook Messenger, Skype and many more platforms besides.
Jordi and Inbenta will be at The AI Summit in San Francisco on 28-29 September. On the first day, Jordi will sit on the closing panel to address the crucial question: What does a business leader need to know when choosing a partner for AI?
Ahead of the event, we spoke to Jordi to find out how far Inbenta have come on their AI journey, where we are seeing their solutions in the enterprise, and where they are headed in the future.
Jordi Torras, CEO and Founder of Inbenta
To pinpoint Inbenta’s proposition in the marketplace, Jordi begins by making the important distinction between human-to-computer communication and human-to-human communication:
“When we have to communicate with computers, historically humans have used HTML, Java, XML, ‘command line’ and a variety of languages that we collectively call ‘Formal Languages’. But when humans communicate with each other, we use English, Spanish and thousands of other languages called ‘Natural Languages’”.
Natural Language Processing (NLP), of course, is an area of AI that allows a computer to understand a Natural Language – and it’s in this field that Inbenta thrive. Jordi explains:
At Inbenta we have developed a true natural language understanding platform that takes care of user conversations in website sites and mobile apps, answering 99% of user questions automatically and also guiding customers through all sales and support processes using chatbots.
Inbenta are already working with an impressive array of enterprises, as their website shows. Their relationship with Ticketmaster, the international ticket sales and distribution website, began five years ago to improve FAQ search on their Spanish website. But it quickly evolved into much more than that, as Jordi explains:
“From there we extended to the rest of their countries, markets and languages, and today we serve more than 25 different markets and websites for Ticketmaster.
“Having achieved more than 99% self-service rate and deflection of incoming support inquiries, the challenge was to also improve sales conversion rate as well as moving into more transactional operations, automating processes that were manually handled at support and sales call centres until now. After a successful proof of concept in Turkey, we are now deploying our chatbots in all international markets”.
Inbenta have also been working with Telefónica since 2010, where they first implemented their search application for the website, as well as FAQ search for customer support sites. Jordi describes their next project with the Spanish telecoms giants:
“The challenge is to create a conversational chatbot that is available in all pages, that understands context, and that is available in more than eight countries around Europe and LATAM. We also developed a realistic, 3D-modelling avatar technology that goes along with chatbots to make them more human-friendly to not only improve self-service and decrease costs, but to increase conversion in the sales process. In 2017 we expect all these markets to go live with a version two of all those chatbots”.
So what is the enterprise strategy that has enabled Inbenta to secure their range of major clients?
“Our natural customers are big to medium-sized B2C enterprises, with reasonably big or very big traffic on their websites, and maintaining relatively big call centres. In that sense, our tool has been able to accommodate to vertical sectors as diverse as banking, airlines or e-commerce”.
The more appropriate question, perhaps, is what stands in the way of Inbenta and global NLP? Jordi explains:
“What really limits our impact is the actual languages that our AI is able to effectively process – that’s why we have invested heavily in having languages like Japanese, Chinese and Korean available, along with most European languages”.
Jordi also outlines their long-term strategy:
“Moving forward we are studying having vertical solutions ready for specific vertical markets. For example, we are working with one the largest banks in Europe to create an online banking chatbot that will be able to securely execute most common online-banking transactions; this will then be able to get connected to different back-office banking applications”.
Implementing their solutions into major companies isn’t always easy. Jordi outlines the key challenges:
“By definition, big enterprises are slow at adopting new, revolutionary technologies such as AI. Also, to the extent that new applications need to effectively and securely connect with existing legacy systems, IT and security departments have to make sure the new systems will match the requirements that mission critical applications require. Having that solved, as well as having a solid implementation team, really helps big corporations to move faster at implementing solutions”.
With their Chatbot Development Platform and Self-Service platforms already proven successes in the marketplace, where are Inbenta going next? Jordi reveals the plans for their upcoming solutions:
“We are about to launch our 2.0 version for the chatbot implementation tool. When ready, Inbenta will be able to take an entire website, including informational areas as well as login-protected, transactional areas and automatically transform them into intelligent chatbots. These chatbots will then be ready on several channels, including website, mobile, Facebook, Skype and many others. We believe this will create a breakthrough on how chatbots are implemented, adding a whole new dimension to converting websites and mobile apps into conversational applications.
At The AI Summit in San Francisco on 28-29 September, Jordi will join three fellow AI experts on the closing panel to debate the key question: What does a business leader need to know when choosing a partner for AI?
At The AI Summit, the most exciting AI software developers will meet with 600+ CxOs from the world’s leading enterprises. To find out more, visit: theaisummit.com