Deep and wide. That’s how financial institutions could describe their ideal approach to building relationships with clients: The goal is to have not only many clients, but also deep, multi-product relationships with them.
3LOQ (pronounced “Three-LOAK”), a company based in India, helps banks and other financial institutions address this challenge by applying artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to customer data. The company’s flagship product, Habitual.AI, is the world’s first AI engine that automates the creation of new banking habits. The technology analyzes customer transaction data and figures out the features and products a customer is not using but should be. This information then gets translated into marketing communications to the customer that encourage more frequent engagement, stronger banking habits, and deeper relationships with their financial institution.
Anirudh Shah, co-founder and CEO of 3LOQ, was making behavior analytics and recommender systems for a wide variety of verticals such as content providers, telecom operators, ecommerce players, and banks.
“Around 2015, we decided to focus our efforts on serving financial institutions. We noticed banks had a lot of churn. They were losing digital customers after a couple of months and didn’t know why. Data showed 80% of customers stopped using the digital products because they were not habitual users, just intermittent. So we recognized financial institutions had a great need for what we do, plus they typically have clean data to work with and are willing to invest in technological solutions.”
“Our customers are typically the more traditional banks that are trying to transform,” explains Saurabh Kumar, Principal Scientist at 3LOQ. “They want to increase usage of digital properties and migrate customers who are using branches and ATMs to mobile or internet platforms. Our technology accomplishes this by helping a bank guide its customers through a complex process of disrupting old habits and forming new ones. We incorporate habit theory into our technology, encoding those learnings into our AI model that helps our banking customers develop habitual users of their digital products.”
Among its many customers, 3LOQ serves the largest banks in India. 3LOQ is currently processing the activities of 3 million banking customers, which amounts to around 15-20 million customer transactions a month.
For data sovereignty reasons, much of the data that 3LOQ processes for its customers in India remains on premises at the institutions’ data centers, typically in or near Mumbai. The encrypted information is then uploaded with low latency to 3LOQ’s Linode Cloud in Mumbai, where it is processed further, and the results get sent back to the banks. 3LOQ also runs its customer-facing web applications on Linode.
“When we started using Linode in 2013, we were experimenting with AWS and other service providers,” recalls Anirudh. “We were attracted by Linode’s price, which was one-third that of AWS. At Linode’s price, we could run our systems continuously and still be cost-effective. From a cost perspective, Linode is a no-brainer. It simply wouldn’t make sense to have our own data center when Linode does it so cheaply.”
“We also found AWS too complicated for our needs,” says Saurabh. “We didn’t need all the additional services AWS provides. Linode is everything we need, configured as a single Linux box. Everything gets bundled in one package—CPUs and RAM, storage and backup—with API access. I have to instantiate that, and then everything is up and running. There’s a simple screen and one checkbox to click to ensure I have hourly and monthly backups of data. Unlike other cloud providers, Linode doesn’t have millions of other services that I have to try to understand. I don’t have to build a staff or get a cloud architect involved. Linode’s simplicity is a great value to us.”
“We also appreciate the responsiveness of the support team,” adds Anirudh. “Linode has never failed us. That’s the kind of service that builds deep relationships.”