Cascading AI has raised $3.9m pre-seed funding round to unlock $1trn in value of advanced AI for the banking industry. The fintech was founded by alumni of Stanford University and Y Combinator. Casca, the flagship product of Cascading AI, aims to revolutionise the lending landscape as the first AI-native Loan Origination System.

“The real game changer is our AI Loan Assistant, Sarah,” said Lukas Haffer, CEO of Cascading AI. “Imagine a small business owner applying for a loan on a Friday evening and waiting 72 hours for a response from a loan officer. With Casca, they receive an email response within minutes from Sarah – who leads them through the entire application process. Sarah is infinitely patient and infinitely kind. Every loan applicant receives the care and attention they deserve.”

Casca is already showing results by achieving nearly 3x higher conversion rates. It reduces manual effort in the back office by 90% compared to traditional methods. “We’ve just seen tremendous success with Casca, even in the first months,” said Ryan Hildebrand, Chief Innovation Officer at Bankwell Bank, Casca’s first customer. “Casca helps bring leads that are five or six times the quality of what was coming in through organic marketing.”

The pre-seed funding round was led by Peterson Ventures, renowned in the vertical SaaS sector known for identifying disruptive startups. Additional participation came from Y Combinator, The Sarah Smith Fund, and Clocktower Technology Ventures, who share Cascading AI’s vision for the future of banking.

Cascading AI: post pre-seed funding goals

  • Expand its team of world-class AI and machine learning engineers
  • Accelerate the development of the Casca product
  • Enhance its human-in-the-loop, responsible AI capabilities
  • Onboard a select group of new banks

“Our mission for the last four months was to build a system that actually brings AI into reality, is useful and fully compliant for one bank and solves problems for them,” Haffer added. Now the company is focused on scaling up the Bankwell installation and onboarding two more banks.

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