Co-founder and COO, Clare.AI
Hongkonger Bianca Ho co-founded Clare.AI, a company that helps financial institutes create chatbots using artificial intelligence, in 2016.
After cutting her teeth in the world of finance working as a private banking analyst at JP Morgan, she ventured into the tech world, working in business development at translation startup OneSky.
“Hong Kong is an incredibly efficient city, but also is quite manual and offline,” she says. Along with co-founder Ken Yeung, Ho felt there was a gap in how enterprises communicate with customers: reliance on phone and brick-and-mortar store service simply didn’t work with sky-high expectations from consumers, who are also “increasingly digital.”
“Clare.AI fills the gap for creating the infrastructure to help enterprises achieve that and stay competitive,” she says. Through the company’s AI services, financial institutes are able to engage with customers via messaging apps such as WhatsApp and WeChat. They can also help customers manage personal finances and answer questions about account information and transactions. The business is Asia-focused, supporting more than 10 languages within the region.
Ho is responsible for business strategy while Yeung manages the product and technology. One of the greatest challenges in running a tech company in Hong Kong, she says, is the fact that the city is “expensive to survive in.”
But Clare.AI has proved to be a success, launching in Taiwan and the Philippines — and will hit Malaysia this year. “We hope to provide the infrastructure for the digital transformation that Hong Kong desperately needs,” Ho says.
Her first job? Intern at a volunteer organization.
Words to live by? “Every time I fail, I will get up and try again. You are always one no closer to a yes!”