Data Science Investment Counter —Funding raised by UK data science companies in 2018.
£ 5.640 Million

Salesforce acquires Israeli conversation-AI startup Bonobo

Front of Salesforce Headquarter in Munich

American software company Salesforce is acquiring Tel Aviv-based conversational AI startup Bonobo, the company revealed on Thursday.

Salesforce has not disclosed the financial details of the deal, but people familiar with the matter told Calcalist the company would be paying $50 million to finalise it.

The acquisition was led by Elad Donsky, Salesforce’s vice president of engineering and head of Israel research and development. Donsky joined the company in 2012 when his startup Implisit Insights Ltd. was acquired by Salesforce.

“Salesforce’s acquisition of bonobo.ai will allow us to expand upon on our vision — driving the Conversational Intelligence revolution and helping companies know their customers like never before,” the Bonobo team said in a blog post commenting on the deal.

Founded in 2017 by Barak Goldstein, Efrat Rapoport, Idan Tsitiat, and Ohad Hen, Bonobo’s conversational AI technology is able to extract insights from online customer interactions.

“Bonobo AI will enhance the power of Salesforce Sales Cloud by leveraging conversational intelligence within the Salesforce Platform, allowing companies to utilise one of their most valuable sources of data – customer interactions”, the Bonobo team said.

The company’s technology collects different sources of customer data, such as voice, chat, video, and emails. It then runs AI algorithms to analyse the data and make sense of it for corporate use.

Before the acquisition, Bonobo had raised an overall $4.5 million from investors including Capri Ventures and G20 Ventures. Despite the company having a stable number of customers, all four founders decided to accept the opportunity for being acquired, because of Salesforce’s extensive reach and resources.

“We would like to deeply thank our employees, customers, investors and everyone that contributed to our success.” Bonobo said. “We are thrilled to become part of the amazing Salesforce family and continue to the next phase of our journey.”

Image via Medullaoblongata Projekt.

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