Westpac invests in intelligent digital assistant specialists Kasisto
23 August 2022
Westpac has today announced an investment in New York-based conversational AI start-up Kasisto. The investment builds on an existing partnership established with Kasisto in 2020, which has bolstered the bank’s portfolio of AI-powered customer experience technology.
Westpac supports customers and employees using Kasisto’s KAI platform in its chatbots and intelligent digital assistants. The investment will enable Westpac to work even more closely with Kasisto to deliver what will create the most value for customers and employees.
Scott Collary, Westpac Group Executive, Customer Services and Technology, says the partnership is making it easier for customers to do business with us.
“The cycles of innovation are getting faster, and so too are the needs and expectations of our customers who want quick, intuitive and personalised service.
“While we’ve made considerable progress upgrading our core systems and capabilities, staying close to new and emerging technologies and partnering with industry innovators is equally important for delivering our digital first strategy.
“Chatbots have traditionally been built with singular purposes and objectives, often making them clunky or confusing. But the technology powering intelligent digital assistants is rapidly maturing, and we recognise its potential to completely transform the service experience.
“Kasisto’s technology has enabled us to evolve from traditional chatbots into a sophisticated, human-like conversational experience, unified for the first time under a single AI orchestration platform. This means customer queries will be answered more efficiently with reduced wait times and fewer hand-offs,” Mr Collary said.
Zor Gorelov, CEO and Co-Founder of Kasisto, says “We are thrilled to have the support and investment of Westpac who are taking a leadership position in the advancement of artificial intelligence technologies in financial services.
“We share a common goal to deliver highly personalised and differentiated customer experiences through cutting-edge AI technology, and we look forward to accelerating our successful collaboration even further.”
Evolution of Westpac Group’s digital assistants:
- 2018: Introduced first digital assistant supporting employees with home loan questions.
- 2018: Launched customer-facing digital assistant ‘Red’ helping over 4.4 million customers to date.
- 2020: Launched first digital human ‘Wendy’ helping younger customers with career advice.
- 2020: Commenced partnership with Kasisto to improve suite of chatbots and intelligent assistants.
- 2021: Launched digital assistant ‘Blue’ helping advisors and direct investors using BT’s wealth management platform.
- 2022: Built a single orchestrating brain to centralise and handle all AI conversations with customers and employees.
Kasisto was launched in 2013 when the technology was seeded from Stanford Research International (which also seeded Apple Siri with the same core engine) to establish Conversational AI specifically for banks. Kasisto became a commercial partner of Westpac in 2020, providing a better conversational and digital assistance experience for employees and customers. More information is available via the Kasisto website.