UCL/Persuadr – AI in Financial Services Opportunity Analysis

FirstPartner were instrumental in helping develop the commercial vision for Persuadr and giving us confidence to understand that we had a real business opportunity.

Emmanuel Hadoux
AI Researcher UCL & Founder of Persuadr AI

An academic research team at UCL had  developed a formal framework for a new generation of AI technologies that can engage in a dialogue with a user to persuade them to do, or not do, something for the better. Having proven the principles, the team were working with UCLB, the commercialisation company of UCL, to raise funding to create a spin out company to commercialise it.

A number of potential commercial and societal use cases were envisaged, including preventative health care and provision of advice via chatbots. However, the team were uncertain which would offer the best commercial opportunity for the new business to focus on.

FirstPartner was asked to assess the market opportunities across a number of sectors and make recommendations on the best use cases and proposition for the proposed company. The aim was to identify a proposition that would be commercially successful while offering societal benefits.

Having reviewed use cases and market potential for the technology across a number of verticals, FirstPartner proposed an outline proposition based on a platform that would enable organisations to automate aspects of the provision of financial advice that are too complex for current chatbot and robo-advisor technologies to handle. These include, for example, handling of concerns and objections to investing wisely or seeking professional advice.

We also identified and introduced the team to potential commercial partners for joint development of proofs of concept in the areas of debt and pensions advice.

Following this work, the team secured additional funding to develop the proofs of concept and the company Persuadr AI has been formed  to help Financial Institutions and robo-advice providers understand, engage and convert customers through automated discussion. The company is currently working to raise seed finance and has already generated significant interest within the financial services community.

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