Clickatell, which provides solutions for payments within digital chats, has secured $91 million in its Series C, according to a Tuesday (Feb. 22) press release.
The company will use the funding to expand its chat commerce offerings, make more of an impact in the U.S. and do more scaling and marketing from demand from leading brands, per the release. Clickatell’s services became more important for people as the pandemic moved many interactions to a digital sphere to protect from the virus.
Company co-founder and CEO Pieter de Villiers said there would likely be more digital payments going on in the future as the ways payments happened in the pandemic become more ubiquitous.
“We believe brands want to avoid placing their customers on hold and it is becoming increasingly difficult for consumers to download their apps; Clickatell’s Chat Commerce platform enables brands to serve their customers where they are, in the chat platform they already use,” de Villiers said in the release.
The release goes on to note that there’s an addressable market of over $80 billion in the chat commerce market, adding that chat is “the largest digital platform in the world” with over 7.7 billion users. This, according to the release, makes it impossible for businesses to operate without using it in some way.
PYMNTS wrote last October that Clickatell was going to debut demonstrations of its new payment capabilities. The company was first used to connect internet businesses with consumers on mobile through text in 2000.
The report quotes Villiers as saying the objective was a heightened ease.
“Paying a utility bill should not take 15 minutes of your life every month,” he said. “Imagine a utility company sending a simple notification in chat to customers for the amount due giving them the option to tap and pay the bill right there from within the notification itself. And, if the customer has a query, we enable brands to leverage a bot or live agents then and there in the same channel.”