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ATB first full-service FI in North America to offer chatbot banking on Facebook Messenger

After months of extensive development and testing with Fintech start-up Finn.ai, ATB Financial has become the first full-service financial institution in North America to successfully facilitate payments using chatbot technology on Facebook Messenger. ATB will make chatbot banking available to a test group of customers in March, 2017.

"We are transforming banking by bringing personalized chat services to our customers that will not only simplify their day-to-day banking, but also actively support their savings goals and improve their overall financial well-being as a concierge service," said Wellington Holbrook, ATB's Chief Transformation Officer. "We want our customers to be able to make transactions on their terms, the way they want to bank. The days of banks dictating to customers how and when they can do business are behind us."

How does banking with a chatbot work, exactly? Essentially, it's the same as chatting with your Facebook friends. ATB customers will be empowered to easily check account balances and make transactions on Messenger by asking questions or giving commands, such as: "How much money do I have in my savings account?" or, "Please pay my cable bill."

Customers will also be able to ask customer service queries to, for example, find out the fee for an e-transfer or locate their nearest bank machine.

In future, ATB will be adding personal financial management capability on Facebook Messenger. Customers will be able to check with the bot to see how much they've spent on gas this month, or find out what's left in their clothing budget.

And Facebook Messenger is just the beginning. ATB and Finn.ai are collaborating to make conversational banking available on other platforms as well, for example SMS and Whatsapp.

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