In an interview with InsurTech Hub Munich, Fabian Beringer, co-founder of E-bot7 talks about the power of artificial intelligence in the customer service space, how E-bot7 benefited of being part of W1 Forward Accelerator’s third batch and his long-term vision for his company.
- What exactly does your start-up do and what is special about your business model?
E-bot7 (www. e-bot7.de) brings artificial intelligence to customer service and helps companies achieve greater customer service efficiency. Our system analyzes inbound messages and provides agents with accurate response suggestions. This reduces the average handling time by up to 80% and automates repetitive and recurring questions right after integration. We connect to existing CRM consoles and train a “convolutional neural network” based on historical support tickets. After integrating the technology, every message or e-mail goes through our model, which predicts valuable meta-data and routes it to the right department. This helps your agents to serve the customers in a smarter, more personalized and effective way.
- Why did you choose the W1Forward Accelerator Program of the InsurTech Hub Munich?
The insurance service today sits at the frontier of disruption. One of the important changes in the insurance industry will be in the field of customer service, AI and automation. We have developed technologies and use cases which can help the insurance business to become more efficient, effective and in the end save a lot of money. We see the W1Fordward Accelerator as the “Innovation Gateway” to all the major insurances in Munich and the surrounding. The bundled knowledge about the market and direct contact to various prominent companies and relevant business units make the whole program extremely attractive to us and helps us acquiring new insurance customers much easier and quicker.
- What opportunities does Munich offer for start-ups?
Munich has many opportunities for startups. First of all, it is home of some of the largest industries and corporates in Germany (Insurances, Automotive etc.). Secondly, it has a very strong network of universities and qualified researchers in the field of AI. Lastly, there is a very strong network of Venture Capitalists and Business Angels. This makes it better for fundraising activities. Also, the startup ecosystem is very much alive.
- Where do you see yourself and your start-up in 5 years?
One of our milestones for the coming years is our international expansion in Europe and Asia. We want to become the market leader in artificial intelligence for customer service. In addition, we want to increase from 15 employees to 50 next year. A big challenge in this growth phase is not to lose the e-bot7 identity. This makes hiring the right employees very important. Then we want to develop and offer further languages with the internationalization. In the future companies will have to focus more on the expansion of customer service in order to be in direct contact with the customer. This trend is supported by new AI technologies such as the e-bot7 solution. At the moment, it is technologically possible to automate up to 80% of text requests. In 5 years it will be possible to automate over 98% of the requests. In our opinion, 100% full automation will take even longer. This would require an enormous amount of data, computing power, and new technologies. However, if it is possible, e-bot7 will be the first provider of this AI technology.
- What advice would you give to other founders?
Work hard for your dream, it takes a lot of hard work. Also, the deal is only safe, when the ink on the contract is dry.
- What surprised you most when you founded your company?
How large companies today started to implement business processes to bring external innovation into the corporate. We would have never expected that startups and corporates can work so well together.