AI is saving international businesses big bucks
Artificial intelligence (AI) is saving companies hundreds of thousands of dollars by cutting the cost of translation services in half, according to a senior figure in the industry.
Christian Arno, founder and president of Edinburgh-based Lingo24, said that the use of AI was also slashing the time it takes to get products to market by 75 percent. Faster translations are also filtering through to quicker revenue growth, with customers reporting an average increase of 44 percent in international sales.
His comments came as Lingo24 prepares for the official launch of Agility Multichannel Connector – which offers seamless and automated translation from Agility’s PIM system – on Monday 24 September 2018 at the B2B Next Conference in Chicago.
Lingo24 has spent the past three years working with some of the fastest growing business-to-business (B2B) companies to develop its latest innovation.
“AI is no longer some far-off fantasy from science fiction films like The Matrix or Interstellar,” said Arno. “It’s already here and is already saving our clients hundreds of thousands of dollars. The firms with the fastest-growing B2B ecommerce revenues are using AI-enabled translation to cut their costs, speed up their time to market and, ultimately, grow their sales.
“But that doesn’t mean that computers or robots are taking over,” Arno added. “We’ve found that the best results come when we combine the skills and experience of our talented translators with the latest AI-enabled computer technology to speed up repetitive tasks. Combining the best of both human translators and AI is a very powerful tool for our clients.”
Arno points to the time and costs savings made for clients when it comes to creating product catalogs.
A typical catalog might contain 50,000 products, with around 10 percent of them being replaced each year. With 100 words of description for each product and ten languages into which the document needs to be translated, the cost of traditional translation work using no technology can soon stack up to several hundreds of thousands.
Clients that opt for AI-enabled translation services are typically saving between 40 percent and 45 percent, a potential annual benefit of $400,000.
Some of Lingo24’s customers that have taken part in the trial stages of the new service have saved even more. In 18 months, a global electronics distributor halved the time it took to launch products globally from four weeks to two weeks – with that figure coming down to just one week this year. Another client – an international specialist in plastic, fibre, foam and packaging products, which operates in 33 countries – reduced its cost per translated word by up to 50 percent.
Lingo24 was founded by Arno in 2001 and now has seven offices spread across Edinburgh, London, Amsterdam, Auckland, Cebu, Philippines, Panama City, and Timisoara, Romania. Its geographic spread gives the firm the scale it needs to serve its clients 24/7. The company employs around 170 staff and has more than 4,000 translators working for it around the world.