AI-based chatbot Niki to add seven more Indian languages

Artificial Intelligence start-up Niki is all set to diversify into seven other Indian languages after having tasted success in the Hindi language app-based internet commerce by creating a virtual agent for online voice-based transactions for consumers who are hassled by the barriers like using the keyboard in English or Indian languages.

Niki has already created a user base of 18 lakh consumers in Hindi language and the start up firm has reached an annual turnover of Rs 300 crore.

IIT Kharagpur alumnus and CEO of Niki Sachin Jaiswal told The Pioneer, “What we are trying to do is to unlock internet commerce for the next billion users in India by developing a virtual agent for them. In India, 95 per cent of the people don’t know how to use an app because most of the apps are in English language. Typing through keyboard in vernacular language is complicated and one should have a basic understanding of computer terminologies to process the instructions through the apps.”

Niki has developed a solution by developing apps in Indian languages that operate through voice-based commands to remove the sore points of the consumers.”

The Niki app will help the users for services like online recharge, bill payments of various utilities like power, phone or gas and also facilitate in booking travel tickets by just issuing commands through voice especially in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.

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Governance Risk and Compliance: 6 Startup Game-changers

With ongoing financial transformation, increased regulations and growing complexity, there is huge potential in working with early-stage start-ups that help bring financial process innovation to SAP S/4HANA® customers. For this cohort, the SAP.iO Foundry Berlin Program teamed up with the S/4HANA® team to work with startups focused on GRC and FinTech innovations.

AIVIDENS: Predictive cash and risk management

WHAT THEY DO

On average, losses due to unpaid invoices represent 0.3 to 1% of companies’ annual revenue. Collection processes often start too late leading to cash or P&L issues, that is why we designed our Predictive Risk Management solution (PRIM). PRIM is designed to anticipate payment issues and calculate various financial and risk indicators. It can also prioritize cash collection processes and propose specific actions. PRIM can be applied on any debt portfolio.

UNIQUE APPROACH

By using AI and applying a proprietary risk model on customers’ financial and operational data, PRIM first predicts whether an invoice will be paid and when. PRIM then segments the debt portfolio according to payment profiles and risk levels. With this combination, PRIM helps increase cash accuracy and understand the risk breakdown. It also helps identify events requiring immediate actions, concentrate efforts where required and ease the collection strategy decision process.

TEAM: Edouard Beauvois — Co-Founder, Nicolas Mertens — Co-Founder

HANKO: FIDO-based Identity- and Authentication-as-a-Service

WHAT THEY DO

Hanko offers a passwordless multi-factor identity and authentication Cloud service for convenient and secure user authentication, enabling its customers to eliminate fraud, phishing, and credential reuse while offering a cutting-edge UX.

UNIQUE APPROACH

With Hanko, businesses can quickly integrate the most advanced authentication methods into their web portals and applications. The service is developer-friendly, supporting open Web standards and open-source SDKs. They also offer a white-label authenticator app as an option. Hanko is GDPR and PSD2 compliant.

TEAM: Felix Magedanz — Founder & CEO, Felix Dubrownik — Technical Lead, Daniel Faulhaber — Product Manager

IRISTRACE: Transforming the management of Business Risk into Value

WHAT THEY DO

Iristrace enables enterprises to better manage their business risks using control frames for their operations that can easily be changed as processes evolve.

UNIQUE APPROACH

Business experts without IT knowledge can easily design and roll out their own controls across their organisation in a record time, ensuring that the strategy reaches the front-line employees, contractors, suppliers and partners. Controls and follow-up action plans are distributed via mobile application, web or messenger. They can be rule based and scheduled automatically, triggered by events or used in self-service. The benefits include a faster implementation of strategy, better staff and supplier engagement on the company’s objectives, improved compliance, proof of execution, shorter learning cycles, lower costs and a far superior customer experience as a result.

TEAM: André Kingham — Chairman, César Mariel Alberto — CEO

PXL VISION: The secure gateway to digital identity

WHAT THEY DO

PXL Vision provides leading solutions for the automation and enhancement of digital identity verification and customer onboarding through tailored and off-the-shelf software solutions powered by the latest developments in Computer Vision and Machine Learning.

UNIQUE APPROACH

PXL Vision’s identity verification solutions deliver both seamless UX and high security through proprietary methodologies, within a fully automated software platform. Offered as both SaaS and custom hosted or on-premise solutions, PXL’s powerful technology stack is available how and where you need it.

TEAM: Michael Born — Founder & CEO, Karim Nemr — Founder & CBO, Nevena Shamoska — Founder & CTO, Roxana Porada — Founder & CPO

SPHERITY: Bridging the physical, biological and digital spheres

WHAT THEY DO

Spherity is building decentralized identity management solutions to power the 4th industrial revolution, bringing secure identities (“Digital Twins”) to machines, algorithms, and other non- human entities. Digital twins enables transactions with the following features: verifiable digital identities, P2P trust with credential-based verification, verifiable business transactions & payments, verifiable data chains (audit trails) and data provenance.

UNIQUE APPROACH

Spherity is providing the “missing puzzle piece” in solving with blockchain technologies and “Self- Sovereign Identity” design principles the challenge of data integrity in the industrial IoT applications. Their digital twins enable tamper-proof data exchange within customer journeys across mobility, supply chain and other business processes.

TEAM: Carsten Stöcker — Founder & CEO, Michael Rüther — Founder & COO

TROY: Reinvents debt collection, reduces clients’ write-offs AND preserves their customers

WHAT THEY DO

Troy is a full-service debt collection agency that builds THE platform for customer experience in debt collection. Their platform drives troy’s debt collection services which have repeatedly proven to outclass traditional providers. Their solution can be used as white-label and also supports financial BPO of receivables management.

UNIQUE APPROACH

Troy is a digital, data-driven, automated and cloud-only solution which incorporates best practices from marketing and CRM to improve the debt collection experience. And the friendliness works. Customers pay more, faster, and happily — proven by clients’ feedback and customer surveys after payment.

TEAM: Philip Rürup — Founder & MD, Till Völzke — Founder & MD, Gunnar Zarncke — CTO

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SAP to Resell BigID data discovery and privacy products as solution extensions

BigID, a leader in data-centric personal data discovery and privacy, announced a global reseller agreement with SAP. Through this agreement, SAP can sell two BigID powered products under the names SAP Privacy Management application by BigID and SAP Data Mapping and Protection application by BigID. The agreement will enable businesses that use SAP solutions to more readily meet the challenges of data-centric data discovery and privacy by harnessing BigID’s advanced Machine Learning-based discovery and intelligence technology.

BigID is one of the industry’s first data privacy and intelligence platforms that allows customers to rely on actual data discovered across the enterprise and cloud rather than surveys and interviews to ensure privacy compliance.

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HEINEKEN announces winners of its HR-tech competition

The Dutch brewing company HEINEKEN concluded its first-ever HR tech-focused competition called HEINEKEN HR Brewhouse last Friday.

The winner of the Recruitment category was SAP, a team consisting of platforms Eightfold.ai, Sonru, and Plum. The final winner for the Wild Card category was Pulsifi, a Singapore-based company that uses data analytics for HR management. Pulsifi’s platform combines organizational psychology and artificial intelligence to help companies hire, retain, and develop talents.

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Smart credit fintech startup Flowcast nabs US$3M Series A funding from ING Ventures, BitRock Capital

The company noted that the proceeds of this round will be used to fund the acceleration of Flowcast’s go-to-market strategy, global market expansion especially in Singapore and the APAC region, and the continuing product development and improvement. Flowcast shares that it is also participating in the SAP.iO Foundry Singapore program, which aims to accelerate startups via providing them access to curated mentorship, exposure to SAP technology, and application programmable interfaces (APIs) with opportunities to collaborate with SAP customers in the Southeast Asian region.

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SAP.iO Kicks Off First B2B European Startup Accelerator Focused on Fintech and Governance, Risk and Compliance

 The SAP.iO Foundry Berlin kicked off a dedicated financial technology (fintech) program with participants consisting of business-to-business startups focused on finance and governance, risk and compliance (GRC), SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) said today.

With the growing complexity of regulatory laws impacting enterprises, startup solutions and innovations will help optimize enterprise resource planning processes and address customer needs. In a recent report by Deloitte, cost reduction and increased regulatory scrutiny were the main drivers of a significant increase in spending on enterprise risk management. With more than 56 percent of organizations using, or planning to use, cloud-based platforms, enterprises are looking for intelligent, real-time, actionable solutions to meet their improved efficiency goals.

These startups are joining the SAP.iO Foundry Berlin program for Fall 2019:

  • Hanko provides Fast Identity Online (FIDO)-based identity and authentication as a service. The startup is founded in Germany.
  • troy is a German-based startup that uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to combine successful debt collection with customer relationship management.
  • Iristrace is transforming the management of business risk into business value by providing risk strategy validation. The startup is headquartered in the Netherlands.
  • PXL Vision is a Swiss startup for creating and managing trusted, verified digital identities.
  • Aividens is a Belgian startup that provides predictive cash and risk management to improve cash accuracy, reduce overdue debts and improve operational efficiency and customer satisfaction.
  • Spherity, a German startup, combines unique identifiers with verifiable data to offer out-of-the-box cloud wallet capabilities.

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Forging the Future of Customer Experience: Introducing the first SAP.iO Foundry Munich Cohort

At SAP, collaboration is not only an invaluable tool for progress, but a key advantage that continuously benefits our customers, employees, partners, and communities at large. The latest example of our commitment to co-innovation is the SAP.iO Foundry Munich, which has just launched its first accelerator program. As the second SAP.iO Foundry to open in Germany, it seeks to leverage a rich ecosystem devoted to inclusive entrepreneurship, technological expertise, and enablement.

Out of over 150 applicants, seven impressive startups were chosen to take part in our Fall 2019 Commerce and Marketing program. We are excited to introduce the SAP.iO Foundry Munich’s first cohort:

8select
E-Commerce has to be a human experience

8select is a plug-and-play software solution offering a curated shopping engine (CSE) to online retailers enabling them to personalize product recommendations for end consumers. It allows retailers to cross-sell by publishing automatically curated product sets (such as outfits) along the customer journey.

Dotaki
Boosting conversion with AI-enhanced user experience

Dotaki takes conversion rates to the next level for online merchants by using artificial intelligence to personalize digital content and experience according to each individual visitor’s method of making purchasing decisions.

presize.ai
Mobile Body Scanning Software for Fashion E-Commerce

presize.ai provides mobile body scanning software for fashion e-commerce, creating a more enjoyable experience by matching the best-fitting clothes with shoppers’ unique body reality apps for web.

parcelLab
Make customers happy again.

parcellab is a cloud-based service that helps brands provide a personalized and branded customer experience during checkout, shipping and return processes.

rapitag
IoT solutions for unique customer experiences

rapitag is a leading provider of secure mobile checkout and unique customer experiences in retail. rapitag offers the world’s first patented antitheft IoT security tags for one-click buying, helping retailers to connect and digitalize their physical stores.

Expivi
Configure your products in 3D and AR

Expivi is an interactive and visual e-commerce platform that generates an immersive shopping experience with instant 3D configurations and artificial reality. Businesses are able to upgrade their online stores by using Expivi on their own existing marketplace.

ViewAR
One system — unlimited possibilities

ViewAR offers a platform-independent system for easy and robust creation of augmented reality apps for web and mobile use.

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HR Startup RallyBright Delivers Team-Building Playbook for the Modern Workforce

John Estafanous always wanted to be a lawyer, until he realized his overwhelming passions were for team building and technology. So he ended up back in the startup world, launching RallyBright.

As CEO of this cloud-based performance management startup, Estafanous believes that RallyBright could not come at a more opportune time.

“With far more diverse and often distributed workforces, companies need new tools to understand the collective work experience and its impact on team performance,” said Estafanous. “We are democratizing management consulting and coaching, giving managers transparency in how they manage and lead.”

Offering team building for workplaces roiled by change, the name of the platform is appropriately named: Resilient Teams.

”We measure resiliency by how well a team engages with diversity, sustains performance, rebounds from setbacks quickly, and learns and grows from the experience,” said Estafanous. “That’s how the highest-level teams perform. You see a problem, engage with it, and persist together through thick and thin.”

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Expanding our commitment to startups: Launching our First SAP.iO Foundry Program in Tel Aviv

Blog Written by Inbar Yacoby

With the immense potential in the entrepreneurial spirit of Europe and as part of SAP’s strategy, I’m very excited to share the news that SAP.iO recently announced the launch of its first accelerator program in Tel Aviv. SAP.iO Foundry Tel Aviv further expands SAP’s operations in Israel and reflects SAP’s commitment to the dynamic Israeli high-tech ecosystem where we have been active for more than two decades, currently employing approximately 800 developers in our R&D centers in Ra’anana and Tel Aviv.

We are excited to collaborate with amazing entrepreneurs and welcome the following startups to our SAP.iO Foundry Tel Aviv Fall program:

ARpalus

Predictive Analytics using Augmented Reality

ARpalus helps CPG and retailers understand and predict their shoppers’ preferences using an AR-simulation platform, measuring real behavioral patterns and delivering AI-optimized in-store execution.

EasySend

A no-code smart form builder that empowers enterprises to quickly convert paper forms and clunky PDFs into compliant eForms with deep-analytics in less than two weeks.

EasySend serves over forty enterprise customers, including leading financial institutions and insurance companies in the US, Germany, Japan and Israel. EasySend’s has been adopted by over 90% of the Israeli financial and insurance market and tier-1 US and German financial

GrowthSpace

Online coaching platform for enterprise employees.

GrowthSpace replaces traditional employee training, like workshops or seminars, with personalized 1X1 training. Using technology, GrowthSpace offers personalized training at the cost of traditional training. Users hold one-on-one video coaching sessions targeted at a specific professional challenge.

Outgage

A direct mail platform that bridges the gap between offline and online campaigns.

Outgage is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) marketing direct-mail platform that makes a connection between offline and online campaigns to create personalized brand experiences, for effective conversations between enterprises and their customers.

Silverback

Sales decisions hub for online retailers

Silverback is an AI-driven sales decision hub for online retailers, empowering them to offer the top-performing products at the most competitive price and optimize promotions to massively boost sales.

Supersmart

Building the world’s leading fast and easy self-checkout system using AI loss prevention technology.

Supersmart provides the world’s first scan-and-go solution with advanced loss prevention capabilities, enabling consumers to instantly check out their fully-loaded cart or basket and have a positive customer experience.

YOUTILIGENT

We Change the Way Vendors and Consumers Connect.

YOUTILIGENT uses machine learning and the Internet of Things to enable vendors and service providers to change the way they communicate with their appliances, through a new connected consumer solution.

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Plum raises $4.2 million USD, shifts focus beyond recruitment

Plum, the Waterloo-based startup that uses AI to help organizations hire and retain talent, has raised a $4.2 million ($5.57 million CAD) seed round.
This raise comes as Plum has shifted focus within the last year from talent acquisition to now offering tools to help companies understand and make predictions about their entire workforce. Plum is also focused on offering those services exclusively for large enterprise customers, rather small-and-medium-businesses (SMBs).

The round was led by Real Ventures with participation from BDC Capital’s Women in Technology Fund, and SAP’s venture fund SAP.iO. The seed funding brings Plum’s total funding to date to $6.1 million USD ($8 million CAD), with the previous financing coming from Plum’s angel investor round.

Plum works closely with SAP and integrates with SAP SuccessFactors, the company’s cloud-based human resource management system. MacGregor explained that the shift in focus was directly related to that partnership, and becoming a SAP.io portfolio company. She noted that SAP encouraged Plum to use its predictive AI to help address the needs of current, as well as incoming, employees.

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Talent Data Platform Plum Raises $4.2 Million in Seed Funding

Plum company logo

Plum, a SaaS (software-as-a-service) firm specializing in providing enterprises with the data they need to quantify the potential of their employees, recently revealed that it had raised $4.2 Million in seed funding. Real Ventures, a Venture Capitalist company committed to future-focused startups led the funding for Plum. Adding in the funding it received in the Angel round, the total now moves up to $6.1Million.


The company made the announcement at SuccessConnect Las Vegas, the annual user conference from SAP SuccessFactors. The conference is aimed at helping HR professionals and Senior Business Leaders solve challenges relating to the workforce and predict future trends in order to take anticipatory actions. The other investors for Plum include SAP.iO and BDC Capital’s Women in Technology Venture Fund. Plum’s app integrates with SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting, which is a part of the HCM suite.

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Cracking the Code: From Startup to Scaleup in Enterprise Software with Ram Jambunathan (SAP.iO), Lonnie Rae Kurlander (Medal), Caitlin MacGregor (Plum), and Dimitri Sirota (BigID)

The startup journey is hard. Data shows that 70% of upstart tech companies fail, while only 1% of these startups will go on to gain unicorn status. Success in enterprise software often requires deep industry experience, strong networks, brutally-efficient execution, and a bit of luck. This panel brings together three successful SAP.iO Fund-backed enterprise startups for an open discussion on lessons learned, challenges of scaling, and why the right strategic investors or partners can be beneficial even at early-stages

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