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OCBC's chatbot 'Emma' helps customers sign S$70m in home loans

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The bank decided to try out the technology with ThetaRay after OCBC’s fintech unit The Open Vault looked through as many as 800 alerts.

OCBC Bank's chatbot application has now closed more than S$70 million in home loans since the start of the year, the bank told The Business Times on Tuesday. Named "Emma", the home and renovation loan chatbot is powered by artificial intelligence.

It took three months for "Emma" to be fully trained to address all possible questions asked by consumers about home loans and renovation loans, with one of the top three questions being how much a consumer can borrow. The chatbot uses its built-in total debt servicing ratio calculator to address the query.

"Emma" is trained to identify and associate with all terminology used in the process of applying for or refinancing a home loan. As new or revised regulations come up, "Emma" can be updated to respond to new questions, the bank said.

"Emma", which is available on desktops, laptops and smart mobile devices, was jointly developed by OCBC's home loans team and CogniCor, one of the startups from The Open Vault at OCBC. The Open Vault is OCBC's fintech accelerator programme.

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