Coinbase buys AI specialist company to improve customer support
The largest US cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase announced the acquisition of the Indian startup Agara, specializing in artificial intelligence, in order to improve the quality of service for its customers.
According to sources from TechCrunch, the deal is estimated at between $40 million and $50 million and is scheduled to close by the end of this year. Founded in 2017, Agara's 40-person team is now based in the Indian city of Bangalore. They all intend to join the Coinbase office soon.
Given that in July 2021, representatives of the exchange announced their intention to create a technology center in India, Agara, led by CEO Abhimanyu, will be able to carry out a “move” at the local level. To attract talented representatives of the cryptocurrency industry to their project, the management of the exchange also offered them a one-time payment of 1,000 in cryptocurrency equivalent.
Agara's flagship product is an AI-powered voice bot used for customer support. It has previously attracted several big market players, including cloud-based software firm Salesforce and one of the world's e-commerce giants Shopify.
Agara's CEO said the most challenging part of their product was making phone calls. Because when they are working on automating customer support for companies, the response of the AI assistant can be slightly less rapid than during a phone call from the user in real-time, where the lightning-fast response is needed to solve the problem he is having.
By attracting Agara experts, Coinbase intends to expand its company's expertise in artificial intelligence and deep machine learning. Pankaj Gupta, head of operations for Coinbase India, said that he was pleasantly surprised by another “meeting” with Agara and glad to see her as part of Coinbase. After all, it was Gupta who co-founded this startup, after which he left it for Google.
So far, Coinbase's efforts to improve customer service have yielded no visible improvement. Previously, users of the exchange criticized the company's telephone support, calling it "frivolous." Although the head of the trading platform still considers customer support a top priority today.
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