Facebook has reportedly acquired a chatbot maker called Servicefriend, as it’s preparing its customer support for the Calibra cryptocurrency project.
According to TechCrunch, the news was first reported after one of Servicefriend’s investors alerted a local publication to the deal. Facebook then confirmed the acquisition to reporters, in a statement:
We acquire smaller tech companies from time to time. We don’t always discuss our plans.
The social media giant’s goal is to reportedly build a bot or a network of bots that will assist with Calibra’s customer service to help users of Facebook’s upcoming Libra cryptocurrency trust the company with their money. On Calibra’s website it notes it’ll feature 24/7 support in WhatsApp and Messenger for its users.
TechCrunch uses a bot Servicefriend built for Globe Telecom in the Philippines as an example, as it brought the “agent hours” down to under 20 hours per 1,000 customer interactions.
Facebook’s Libra has been met with resistance from regulators throughout the world. Earlier this month the German government passed a blockchain strategy that’ll block parallel cryptocurrencies, including that of the social media giant.
The move came shortly after Germany revealed it was opposed to the launch of Facebook’s Libra in Europe, in a message that echoed the words of France’s Minister of the Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire, which said it “cannot authorize” the development of the cryptocurrency in the continent.