Zendesk is on track to gain even more customer service capabilities and announced the acquisition of Cleverly, an early-stage artificial intelligence startup.
The financial terms of the deal are not publicly available at this time. Cleverly’s exact funding figures are not public knowledge either.
The startup was founded in 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal, and has, according to its site, received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program. In an article by TechCrunch this year focused on the startup scene in Portugal’s capital, Cleverly was described as one of the most exciting deep tech companies in the region.
The startup’s product platform delivers a series of capabilities powered by artificial intelligence, including a triage function to tag incoming service requests automatically to aid in workflow categorization.
Cleverley has what it calls an AI-powered human augmentation for its agent assist feature to help customer service reps give relevant answers to questions. The company’s technology already integrates with Zendesk and Salesforce.
Shawna Wolverton, EVP of product at Zendesk, justified the acquisition citing the similar vision the companies share for customer service. She said that the two companies want to democratize AI so companies can leverage it to make apps and start with AI “right out of the box.”
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Wolverton said that AI can deliver a customer experience that caters to the current market needs. Humans and AI will work side by side to deliver this vision at scale.
She noted that her company will be welcoming the entire Cleverly team to Zendesk from August 30, including its founders Christina Fonseca (VP of Product) and Pedro Coelho (principal engineering lead, Machine Learning).
Zendesk already has AI-powered features and capabilities, which will now advance further with Cleverly’s technology and expertise on board.