Korea’s food delivery app Baedal Minjok to deploy AI service

2017.03.07 16:10:47 | 2017.03.07 16:41:44
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Woowa Brothers chief executive Kim Bong-jin

Woowa Brothers chief executive Kim Bong-jin

South Korea’s Woowa Brothers Corp., a Seoul-based startup that runs the country’s most popular food delivery mobile app “Baedal Minjok,” will deploy self-developed artificial intelligence (AI) assistant to help its customers choose menus and diners.

The so-called chatbot “Baemin David” project will be embarked on at an initial investment of 10 billion won ($8.71 million).

According to the company on Monday, its AI-powered automated program will understand and speak in Korean language. The deep-learning machine will master Korean expressions pertinent to ordering delivery food through the app, the company explained. Its name takes after Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi film “A.I. Artificial Intelligence” (2001).

Kim Bong-jin, chief executive and co-founder of Woowa Brothers, first took interest in the AI feature when he engaged in Naver Corp.’s first AI project “AMICA” last year. Inspired by the nation’s biggest portal service provider’s project, Kim has decided to tap into the AI technology for Woowa Brothers, but won’t get any help from Naver.

Baemin David logo

Baemin David logo

The Baemin David project is also led by the startup’s chief technology officer (CTO) Kim Bom-jun who joined the firm in 2015. He graduated from Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and took on big data related projects in major information technology (IT) firms in Korea.

Woowa Brothers will also form a task force (TF) team dedicated to the project within the firm and recruit external AI experts later, the company said.

According to research firm Nielsen Koreaclick Co., as of January, Baedal Minjok dominated the local mobile food delivery market with a 51 percent share, followed by “YoGiYo” and “Baedaltong,” both owned by Germany-based food-ordering service operator Delivery Hero GmbH, with 35 percent and 14 percent shares, respectively. Baedal Minjok swung to profits last year for the first time since its inception in 2010.

By Oh Chan-jong

[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]

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