Charlie, a text-based artificial intelligence chatbot company, has announced that it has raised $9 million in Series A funding led by Propel Venture Partners to help users make proper financial decisions and find more ways to save.
This round of funding will enable Charlie to reach millions of users around the country. And the company will develop new features and partnerships along with growing its team. Through Facebook Messenger and SMS text messages, Charlie has more than 250,000 users who are mostly millennials.
“Our vision at Charlie has always been to build an AI that brings empathy, simplicity, and financial empowerment to anyone looking for help with their money,” said Charlie CEO and co-founder Ilian Georgiev. “With this capital, we’re looking forward to developing new ways to help even more people form healthy financial habits. We want people to know that Charlie is there to always look out for their spending and goals, so they can focus on the more important things in life.”
Charlie exchanged over 20 million messages and helped release consumers from a cumulative debt burden of more than $50 million. This is done by helping deploy habit-forming tricks to help change money behavior. As a result, Charlie has been growing 30% month-over-month.
“Conventional financial advice through charts and graphs doesn’t provide the actionable and simple advice consumers really need to build savings and drive positive financial behavioral changes,” added Propel Venture partner Ryan Gilbert. “In a crowded space, we believe that Charlie is delivering what’s been missing among existing financial solutions: trustworthiness and approachability.”
The majority of Charlie’s users are female at 80% and the average age is 27. McDonald’s is where most of these users spend their money. Houston is the largest metropolitan area that Charlie is in and it has the highest penetration of users in Utah.
“Affluent men have more than enough tools to help them optimize their finances,” explained Uncork Capital partner Stephanie Palmeri ― who participated in the company’s seed round. “We saw Charlie’s potential to really change the lives of young people, in particular young women, by helping them avoid unnecessary fees, find savings, and stress less about money in general.”
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