Real-time video chat for the purposes of customer support has gained traction in recent times. We’re all, by now, familiar with the — slightly kitsch — Amazon Mayday support button for their Kindle Fire HDX, and since then there have been a number of startups trying to reproduce this feature. Industries like banking, financial services, insurance, real estate, retail and other service-focused companies often benefit from live human support in this video form.
LiveNinja, which launched the Katana video chat platform, has now raised new funding from New York-based Scout Ventures. The Miami-based startup is their first such investment South Florida. Terms were not disclosed. Scout led the investment round with participation from its existing Limited Partners as well as some of the fund’s new South Florida partners.
LiveNinja’s first iteration was as a video marketplace to chat to experts, but last year it released Katana, a customer service application for video chatting with customers. A new version with support for mobile devices is on the way.
Currently, LiveNinja’s Katana, Vee24 (which has had $5.5 million in funding) and Video Desk (which has raised $4.8 million) are some of the main players in this space. Katana’s pitch is that while large enterprises can use it, it’s also affordable for small-to-medium businesses.
In September 2014, Scout Ventures opened a satellite office in Miami in order to tap into the city’s burgeoning start-up eco-system.