BBVA-backed investment fund leads Series A funding into AI advisor Charlie

Maria Nikolova

AI chatbot Charlie has secured a $9 million Series A Round led by BBVA’s Propel Venture Partners.

As artificial intelligence (AI) continues to advance in the financial services sector, chatbots driven by AI are among the solutions that gain popularity among companies and their clients. Today, BBVA provided another piece of evidence of this developing trend by announcing that a BBVA-backed investment fund will support the growth of AI-driven advisory service Charlie.

Charlie has secured a $9 million Series A Round led by BBVA’s Propel Venture Partners.

Charlie is a text-based AI chatbot that seeks to help people who are less experienced in financial matters. Charlie’s aim is to help its users worry less about money. For instance, the advisor, pictured as a penguin, may identify more ways to save and avoid burdensome recurring fees and penalties.

Designed to interact with people via SMS text or Facebook Messenger, the chatbot has nearly 250,000 users, mostly millennials.

This latest seed-investment round is aimed at supporting massive growth in the service, with the ambition to take it up to between 5 – 10 million users in the United States alone, as well as funding the launch of new features and services. The company also intends to use the investment to expand its team and add leading financial partners to assist in automating more aspects of a people’s everyday financial life.

AI-powered chatbots are becoming more popular in the financial services sector. Recent examples include TD Ameritrade’s AI-driven chatbot for Facebook Messenger which was made available to Singaporean investors in August this year.

TD Ameritrade Singapore Pte. Ltd. has brought US financial market updates, investor education, research and trading to its retail investors in Singapore through Facebook Messenger. The solution, powered by artificial intelligence (AI) technology and backed by live client service support, gives local retail investors one more way to access the US equity markets and their investments.

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