This chatbot by fintech startup Pealo helps Singaporean SMEs navigate funding
APPLYING for grants and funding can be confusing for young startups and SMEs, especially with the huge number up for grabs in Singapore. To solve this, fintech startup Pealo has launched a chatbot named Bobbie to help young founders with the entire process.
Pealo, which specializes in facilitating funding for SMEs and business evaluation for investors, has employed the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to create Bobbie. Bobbie can apply for grants on behalf of the SMEs, appeal for rejections, and help with other financial products.
Bobbie is hosted on Pealo’s Facebook page, and users can speak to the chatbot using Facebook Messenger. CEO and founder of Pealo, Prakesh Somosundram, told e27 that he’s a huge fan of using AI to get through business processes efficiently.
He was quoted saying: “Though we are blessed with the most amount of government assistance globally; constantly through the course of our work we get countless numbers of clients complaining about the ever-evolving grant landscape in Singapore.”
It was these complaints that drove Pealo to develop Bobbie, which can not only answer questions, but also helps its own company validate and qualify business leads, reports e27.
The chatbot, currently in Beta mode, answers to a simple “Hello” on Facebook Messenger, and responds with:
Pealo is eager to hear feedback on their chatbot, and is organizing a Google Hangout in the near future to speak to users and find out how Bobbie is doing, according to their blog. Somosundram also said they will be holding several community crowdsourcing events to find out people’s responses to the bot.
The fintech startup, run by Somosundram and marketing lead Chris Basil, has 300 SMEs signed up to its platform currently. After raising a pre-seed round of US$400,000 last July, Pealo aims to have 1,000 companies registered by the end of this year.
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