On Friday the 31st of March, our incubated startup FinChatBot participated in and won the Geeks-On-A-Plane & 500 Startups pitching contest, hosted by Startup Grind Cape Town. We at Far Ventures are extremely excited to write this post and incredibly proud of this amazing achievement. Winning this event has served as yet another form of validation of our concept and the direction we are taking with this innovative solution to disrupting the financial industry.
About the Startup Grind Event
The pitching contest was the final leg of the very first African edition of Geeks-On-A-Plane. An initiative launched by major Silicon Valley startup accelerator: 500 Startups in an effort to discover new and innovative businesses all around the world. FinChatBot was among three Capetonian startups selected to participate in the contest out of 50 applicants. The other finalists were: DroneClouds, a company using drones to detect agricultural diseases; and Mobenzi, a provider of technology and professional services to organisations involved in research.
FinChatBot stole the show, winning the four-hour long pitching battle and taking the $1000 prize money. Following the event, Monique Woodward, 500 Startups partner and representative of the Black Founders network explained the potential in African tech companies. She stated that US based VC’s are missing out on a tremendous and underserved market.
The start-up develops a chatbot platform, Holly, an artificial intelligence available on all platforms. The value proposition is to increase insurance companies conversion rate whilst also reducing call centre costs. Customer queries pass through an instant messaging platform, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Developed bots can be integrated on any website and follow all marketing and design guidelines. The objective is to best communicate a brand image and its values through an interactive interface. The start-up has gained traction as some of its clients are top insurance companies operating in South Africa.