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This month, we would like to focus on ‘Fintech’ Klarna and their recent internal implementation of a customer service tool based on Artificial Intelligence (AI). This implementation has led them to predict a $40m improvement in their results within the first year. More broadly, we believe that this event is a good illustration of the operational and financial (and even stock market) advantage that rapid adoption of AI can give a company over its competitors.


Klarna is a Swedish fintech founded in 2005. It is not listed on the stock exchange and is mainly active in payment services, with a view to facilitating e- commerce transactions. On February 28th, Klarna published a press release detailing the initial results of the global roll-out of its Artificial Intelligence-based assistant just one month earlier. This tool, which is based on AI technology from OpenAI (the parent company of ChatGPT), is designed to manage queries, complaints, and requests from customers (online shoppers).

With barely a month of history, Klarna proudly detailed the following successes achieved:

  • The AI assistant engaged in 2.3 million conversations with Internet users, accounting for two thirds of Klarna’s customer service chats.
  • It performs the equivalent of the work of 700 full- time agents and is on a par with human agents in terms of customer satisfaction.
  • It is more accurate in resolving problems, resulting in a 25% decrease in requests being resubmitted. Customers now see their issues resolved in less than 2 minutes, compared with 11 minutes previously.
  • The service is available in 23 markets in over 35 languages, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • As a result, Klarna estimates that this assistant will lead to a profit improvement of $40 million by the end of 2024.


The case of Klarna reaffirms our convictions about Artificial Intelligence, on multiple levels:

  • The significant attention generated by Klarna’s succinct press release highlights the market’s responsiveness to announcements related to Artificial Intelligence and illustrates the significance and visibility of AI as a topic among investors, clearly confirming the interest in AI as an investment theme.
  • Unsurprisingly, not everyone is happy with the implementation of AI. Téléperformance, a company managing call centres and counting Klarna among its client, saw its share price plunge by 14% on February 28th. It is possible that investors were worried that Téléperformance’s customers would choose to develop an in-house AI-based customer relations tool, which seems to be working satisfactorily and cost-effectively at Klarna, rather than continue contracting with Téléperformance. In our opinion, such a situation showcases the benefits of active management like the approach we take. On the other hand, a passive fund (such as an ETF focused on AI) may struggle to quickly draw conclusions and react on the stock market in response to unexpected announcements.
  • As AI is a relatively new investment area, we can logically expect to see a proliferation of similar announcements from companies wishing to detail the progress of their AI projects. We might also wonder whether Klarna’s communication was, at least in part, intended to present the group in a favourable light with a buoyant theme, in preparation for a possible future stock market flotation.
  • Whatever the motivation, the importance of companies communicating clearly, regularly, and effectively about their AI projects has been demonstrated. Outside the tech sector, many companies are currently only providing qualitative information about AI. More precise communication (especially on the quantification of financial benefits, as Klarna has done) has the potential to generate interest from investors. It is also worth noting that Téléperformance published a press release on February 28th (albeit after its share price had already fallen) detailing its advancements in AI . A few days later, the Group provided additional information when it published its financial results.

Klarna’s announcements reinforce our convictions and the investment philosophy we follow in our ODDO BHF Artificial Intelligence fund:

  • We firmly believe that AI enables companies to achieve tangible productivity gains. Klarna serves as prime example, showcasing how AI can deliver both rapid and substantial results. The expected $40m increase in profits thanks to AI is particularly noteworthy when compared to the company’s net loss of around $236m in 2023.
  • As a result, companies that integrate AI (into their internal ​ ​ ​ ​ organisation ​ ​ ​ ​ and/or ​ ​ ​ ​ products and services they sell) faster than their competitors will gain an edge over their rivals at all levels: operational, commercial, financial, etc. Ultimately, we can anticipate positive stock market outcomes for these companies, which our fund will aim to benefit from.
  • We are also encouraged by the sector diversification adopted by our fund. It sets us apart from many of our competitors’ AI funds, which invest solely in Tech. This is because Klarna is an AI beneficiary that can be considered to be at the frontier of the financial sector. This case shows, as we are convinced, that AI increasingly concerns a universe of stocks and sectors well beyond the Technology segment alone. Today, our fund offers investors an already diversified sector exposure (Healthcare, the fund’s leading non-Tech sector, currently represents around 10% of its assets, compared with ‘only’ around 70% for Tech). It will continue to evolve and diversify further in the future, beyond Tech, as AI is adopted by all economic sectors. Unlike some of its competitors, our fund has a genuinely long- term outlook, whereas some of our competitors’ funds, whether actively or passively managed but restricted to the Tech sector alone, could find themselves held back by their overly narrow investment universe when the growth of AI materialises across the economy.

Author EFI

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