Bengaluru-based SaaS startup Vernacular.ai has raised $5.1 Mn in Series A funding. The company said that the round has been led by Exfinity Ventures and IAN Fund. Further, AngelList, Kalaari Capital and LetsVenture also participated in the round.
Sourabh Gupta, cofounder and CEO, Vernacular.ai said that the fresh funding will be used for global expansion in Southeast Asia and the US. It will also invest in research and development to enhance its AI-based voice automation platform.
The company has earlier raised funding from Kstart.
Vernacular.ai was founded in 2016 by Sourabh Gupta and Akshay Deshraj, along with a founding team – Prateek Gupta, Pravendra Singh and Abhinav Tushar. The company offers an AI-based voice automation platform, VIVA that helps accelerate engagement strategy. It utilises speech recognition and Natural Language Understanding (NLU) technology.
With over 100K hours of training data, VIVA has been deployed to help enterprises boost customer stickiness and loyalty through a deep understanding of the customer’s context and intent.
The company says that its suite of speech and language solutions are built on top of VASR (Vernacular Automated Speech Recognition), which enables enterprises to convert audio to text by applying powerful neural network models in an easy-to-use API. The API recognises over 160 dialects in 10 different Indian languages to support the enterprise user base.
Chinnu Senthilkumar, general partner, Exfinity Ventures said, “VIVA completely eliminates the need for CAPEX intensive legacy IVR solutions, thus offering a superior cost-efficiency to its customers, combined with an uninterrupted 24×7 support and reach. Its scalable, modularised and end-to-end solutions are uniquely positioned to address the growing unmet needs of South Asian multilingual market.”
One of the key areas that have been impacted by Artificial Intelligence is customer service. Innovative technologies such as Voice AI have already been deployed in enterprise contact centres and is rapidly moving these service-based operations towards higher operational efficiency.
Vernacular.ai competes with players such as Yellow Messenger and Haptik, which was acquired by Reliance Jio. Haptik cofounder and CEO Aakrit Vaish has written that the conversational AI world has come a long way from being just a novelty item for businesses to being a feature with actual, substantial quantitative and qualitative advantages.
The global conversational AI market is expected to reach $15.7 Bn by 2024, as compared to $4.2 Bn in 2019. Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of the sector is predicted to be 30.2% between 2019 to 2024.