Pand.ai, a Singapore-headquartered artificial intelligence (AI) startup that provides smart chatbots powered by their proprietary natural language processing (NLP) engine, recently announced that it has successfully secured an undisclosed sum of funding in a pre-Series A financing round participated by Bualuang Ventures, a wholly owned subsidiary of Bangkok Bank and one of Thailand’s leading venture capital firms. Even though the amount raised was not revealed publicly, it is understood from certain sources that the funding is a 7-digit American dollar sum. Previously, the AI startup had announced last November that it had raised US$1 million as its seed fund, which involved the participation of an angel investor based in Hong Kong.
Established in 2016, the fresh funds will enable the smart chatbot startup to further develop and increase the assets and capabilities of its Singapore NLP laboratory, which is responsible for handling the development of conversational AI engines for the multiple languages of the countries of Southeast Asia. Presently, the company’s chatbots, which are powered by their proprietary natural language processing engine, are able to understand Indonesian, Malaysian, traditional and simplified Chinese, and English. The startup noted that their chatbots will soon understand Thai as well, which is likely given a boost due to the fresh injection of funds raised from its latest pre-Series A funding round.
Krit Phanratanamala, who is investment advisor of Bualuang Ventures, said that Pand.ai managed to distinguish itself from the crowd at the Bangkok Bank Innohub Season 2 global accelerator program, which was held between August 2018 to March 2019, where it was one of four startup teams that are pioneering different fields of the AI space. Since then, the venture capital firm has been collaborating closely with Pand.ai along with Innohub in order to deliver a feasible solution that can address the real issues currently facing Thailand’s market. Krit further added that the firm believes that their timely investment, coupled with Bangkok Bank’s extensive network, will offer both domestic consumers and those abroad with an overall comprehensive and much more enhanced digital banking experience.
Pand.ai, which is a play on the Malaysian word for smart, builds smart chatbots that are far more advanced than their ordinary counterparts. For example, whereas most normal chatbots struggle mightily with complex questions and queries, the startup’s chatbots can manage complex and difficult inquiries with aplomb due to their multidimensional search algorithm. As for the capability to converse intuitively like a real human, Pand.ai’s embedded in-state memory retention technology enables contextual memory for the chatbots, which allows them to give appropriate answers to questions based on the conversation’s context. The AI startup also boasts its unique Bot2Bot technology, which advances chatbot learning to an even greater degree by the skillful management of distributed content spanning various geographies and divisions with numerous active chatbots. Panda.ai’s chatbots are also capable of providing real-time data visualization by supplying the latest and up-to-date pertinent information that are supported by proper visual content to assist in the decision making process.
To date, Pand.ai’s noteworthy clients have included Tokio Marine Insurance Group, Allianz, Bangkok Bank, UBS, Schroders, and Great Eastern. With the support and investment from Bualuang Ventures, the AI-powered smart chatbot startup can further refine and develop its chatbot technology to potentially become a regional powerhouse in the AI space.