Heyday, an AI-powered customer messaging company, has raised $6.5 million CAD ($5.1 million) led by returning investors Innovobot and Desjardins Capital, the company announced Thursday.
The company plans to use the capital to support its international expansion, speed up its growth and prepare for a Series A funding round later this year, the company said.
The startup's enterprise client roster has grown by more than 60%, and it has doubled its recurring revenue over the last two quarters, per the announcement. Luxury apparel brand Lacoste has enlisted the company to provide its international messaging and chat capabilities.
Heyday expects to break its previous revenue records this year and cited the pandemic as the catalyst for accelerating retail's digital shift toward e-commerce. The startup's international clientele now spans 77 countries and includes retailers and brands like French sporting goods company Decathlon and Danish fashion brand Bestseller, per the announcement.
"In this new 'at-home economy,' retailers need new ways to bring their in-store experience online, via their customers' preferred digital channels including messaging apps," Steve Desjarlais, co-founder and CEO of Heyday, said in a statement. "Just like how Slack and Zoom brought the office chatter into people's homes, Heyday is bringing the retail store experience into people's living rooms, via text-based and video chat, effectively bridging the gap between online and offline channels in a COVID-influenced world."
While Heyday adds more retailers and brands to its roster, other retailers are also investing in chatbot technology, and consumers are expected to spend more using the tool. In January 2020, David's Bridal debuted its chatbot Zoey to streamline responses to customer inquiries and connect them with stylists. H&M integrated its virtual assistant and chat services into Google tools, including Google Search and Google Maps, last fall.
According to a March 2020 report from Juniper Research, purchases through chatbots could reach $142 billion by 2024, a jump from $2.8 billion in 2019.