Level AI Raises $ 13 Million Series A To Create Conversational Intelligence For Customer Service – TechCrunch
Level AI, a start-up from a former member of the Alexa product team, wants to help companies process customer service calls faster by understanding the interactions they have with customers in real time.
Today the company went public, while announcing a $ 13 million Series A run by Battery Ventures with help from start-up investors Eniac and Village Global as well as a few anonymous angels. Battery’s Neeraj Agrawal will join the startup’s board of directors under the terms of the agreement. The company reports that it has now raised $ 15 million, including a previous seed of $ 2 million.
Company founder Ashish Nagar helped execute the product for the Amazon Alexa team, working on an experimental project to get Alexa to have an extended human conversation. While they didn’t get there because the technology just isn’t here yet, it helped him deepen his understanding of conversational AI, and in 2019 he launched Level AI to bring that knowledge to the table. to customer service.
“Our product helps real-time agents perform better, resolve customer queries faster, and clarify them faster. Then after the call, it helps the auditor, the people who do QA and training audits for those calls, get their jobs done five to ten times faster, ”Nagar explained.
He says the Level AI solution involves several activities. The first is to understand the nature of the conversation in real time by breaking it down into meaningful chunks that the technology can understand. Once done, they take that information and run it on workflows running in the background to provide useful resources, and finally use whatever conversation data they collect to help businesses learn from all of this activity. .
“We now have all of this call, email, chat data, and we can look at it from a new perspective to better train agents and provide insight into other aspects of the business, such as bosses. product, etc., ”Nagar said.
He clarifies that this is not about examining sentiment or using keyword analysis to stimulate action and understanding. He says he’s really trying to understand the language of the interaction and provide the right kind of information to the agent to help the customer resolve the issue. It involves modeling the intention, memory, and comprehension of multiple things at the same time, which, as he puts it, is how humans interact and what conversational AI tries to emulate.
While it’s not completely finished yet, they’re working to resolve each of these issues as technological advancements allow.
The business was launched in 2018 and the first idea was to create voice assistants for frontline workers, but after talking to clients, Nagar learned that there was no real demand for it, but that there was for the use of conversational AI to help increase human workers, especially in customer service.
He decided to build this instead and released the first version of the product in March 2020. Today, the company has 27 employees across the United States and India, and Nagar believes that by being distant and in hiring anywhere, it can hire the best people, while fostering diversity.
Agrawal, who is the lead investor for the tour, sees a company solve a fundamental problem of getting the right information to an agent in real time. “What he has built has real time in mind. And that’s kind of the holy grail of helping customer service agents. You can provide information after the call ends, and that’s […] useful, but […] you get the real value [by delivering information] during the call and that’s where the real business value is, ”he said.
Nagar recognizes that this technology could spread to other parts of the business like sales, but he intends to stay focused on customer service for now.