Reliance Industries Limited announced on Wednesday that its subsidiary Reliance Jio Digital Services Limited has acquired artificial intelligence (AI) firm Haptik for Rs 700 crore, with Rs 230 crore as the consideration for the initial business transfer. "On a fully diluted basis Reliance will hold about 87% of the business with the rest being held by Haptik founders and employees through stock option grants," RIL said in a statement. The deal will also give an exit to majority stakeholder Times Internet, which has invested in Haptik in 2016.
Founded in 2013, Haptik is one of the world's largest conversational AI platforms and focuses on key customer engagement use cases such as customer support, concierge, lead generation and live chat. It has processed more than 2 billion interactions till date, with a marquee client list that includes Samsung, Coca-Cola, Future Retail, KFC, Tata Group, Oyo Rooms, Mahindra Group, among others.
"This strategic investment underlines our commitment to further boost the digital ecosystem and provide Indian users conversational AI-enabled devices with multi-lingual capabilities. We believe voice interactivity will be the primary mode of interaction for Digital India," said Akash Ambani, Director, Reliance Jio.
This transaction enables the telco to leverage Haptik's capabilities across various devices and touch points in the consumer's journey. "The investment focus is on enhancement and expansion of the platform, with an addressable market opportunity of over 1 billion users in India," read the statement.
The partnership will also give a boost to Haptik's existing enterprise grade business. Citing PeopleStrong, a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) HR technology and solutions company, IANS reported that more than 50 per cent of Indian retail companies will be operating on AI by 2020. Moreover, Accenture estimates that AI has the potential to add $957 billion to India's economy by 2035.
According to RIL, the Haptik team will continue to drive growth of the business.
(Edited by Sushmita Choudhury Agarwal)