• AI customer service specialist Afiniti raises $130m, is valued at $1.6bn

    960 640 Stuart O'Brien

    AI in customer service is hot right now, as illustrated by the fact that Washington DC-based Afiniti just raised $130 million in Series D funding, valuing the company at a whopping $1.6 billion.

    Privately-held companies with a valuation of more than $1 billion are extremely rare, and it’s expected that the firm will complete an IPO within the next 12 months, with profitability imminent.

    Afiniti now has an impressive roster of backers, who are all making a serious collective bet that AI will be very much be at the forefront of customer service in years to come.

    Participants in the latest round of funding include Washington Post CEO Fred Ryan, Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg, Global Asset Management, The Resource Group and Zeke Capital, with previous backers including McKinsey, Elisabeth Murdoch, former Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer and former BP CEO John Browne.

    The company has some big clients too – T-Mobile USA, Virgin Media, Caesar’s Entertainment and Sky – plus some big hitting employees, including none other than Princess Beatrice as its Vice President of Partnerships.

    Led by CEO Zia Chishti the firm doesn’t sell its platform as a service but instead takes a cut of any sales its clients secure via its systems.

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    Stuart O'Brien

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