Backed by Ratan Tata, Ronnie Screwvala and SAP from Germany, Niki.ai, India’s homegrown bot, which enables users to book cabs, buses, hotels along with bill payments and other services on a simple chat and voice interface, has turned profitable for all transactions starting October 2018. This year AI start-up has registered a Rs 200 Crore gross merchandise revenue (GMV) annualised at current run rate.The company has launched its much-awaited voice command feature, providing vernacular support to India’s next billion internet users.
The startup has shown a multifold growth in the last financial year, owing to its growing user-base which currently stands at 3+ million customers. Niki works on a channel partnership model, wherein it takes orders from customers and passes it on to its partners for fulfillment. During 2017-18, the company witnessed high double digit boost in the average order amount to Rs 303 per order while the average number of orders placed by users shot up to 6 every month.
Commenting on achieving this milestone, Sachin Jaiswal, Co-Founder and CEO, Niki.ai says, “This is the result of the unwavering faith shown in us by our Customers, Investors, Partners and also due to the amount of hard work that the team puts in. We talk to one lakh people every week, facilitating them with hotel reservations, recharges, bill payments, and other utility payments such as power and gas, all done simply by talking to Niki, like you would talk to a friend."
Going Forward: Building Technology for Bharat
Niki is set to achieve an annualized GMV run rate of Rs 1800 Crore by the end of FY20. The company intends to use their Artificial Intelligence-based proprietary technology to build a product for Bharat. They are working on removing all interfaces for the masses, keeping everything similar to the offline world, where every service and product is availed through the medium that users are most familiar with - conversations. Now live in Hindi, the bot will be available in multiple Indian languages by the end of this year.
The company also has a plug and play SDK which has been integrated into web/mobile applications by businesses in the BFSI and e-commerce sectors. Besides providing transactional services via automated personalized messaging, Niki has helped its SDK partners acquire, engage and convert users. Niki's list of distribution partnerships includes Federal Bank, HDFC Securities, ICICI Bank, Early Salary, ePaylater, Karbonn, to name a few.