Interview with Stavros Vassos, CEO at


Stavros Vassos is the co-founder and CEO of, a high-potential startup/scaleup in AI that offers conversational AI solutions for Customer Experience (CX) and Employee Experience (EX). In January 2023, Stavros and his team “AI4EPO” won 1st place in the first AI contest organized by the European Patent Office. The challenge was to find a new way to classify patents and extract specific information related to sustainability and the so-called green plastics. We met with Stavros and discussed Helvia's value proposition and his personal journey so far. Here's what he told us:

Tell us a few things about How did it all start? How did you discover the market opportunity for your technology, and where are you today?

At, we help companies transform their operations with AI-powered chat and voice assistants. It all started in 2016 when we realized that chat was becoming the new norm for daily communication. This was at a time when Facebook Messenger reached a billion users, and corporate chat platforms like Slack were revolutionizing workplace communication. Chat was evolving as a key communication channel, yet the development of applications within this channel was still nascent.

Back then, there were very few tools to design, develop, and manage chatbots. We started building ChatBricks, a platform that allowed businesses to specify how they wanted their chatbot to behave, e.g., in what conversations to engage and where to draw answers to handle questions, as well as to deploy their chatbot in common chat channels and monitor its performance.

Being early in the game allowed us to work with early adopters of the emerging chatbot technology, including a Fortune 500 company in the US. This influenced our platform to support the needs of large enterprises and toward two main types of solutions: chatbots for automated customer support and chatbots for enhancing internal business operations.

Today, we are a team of 40 people, and through our partnerships and resellers, ChatBricks is providing AI Assistants to hundreds of businesses worldwide. In the ever-evolving era where AI is becoming a commodity across all sectors, we want to expand globally, capitalizing on its established technology and track record.

How do you differentiate from other similar offers in the market? What value does bring to the clients and partners?

ChatBricks is an all-in-one platform for companies seeking to harness the power of AI Assistants.  It is the go-to solution for the fastest, easiest, and safest way to deliver Generative AI experiences for Customer Support and Internal Operations. With ChatBricks, businesses can employ a wide range of AI Assistants for internal operations, e.g., helping employees with company policies, answering questions from the employee handbook, etc and external customer-facing functions, e.g., providing automated customer support, assisted sales, etc.

Αt, we share a deep-rooted passion for AI with a mission to solve real-world problems. We closely follow the developments in the research field of AI and dive into the tough problems that arise in practice, the ones that are not yet solved and for which there are no established best practices.

To achieve this, we have collaborated strongly with academia, participating in research projects and co-supervising MSc theses. A concrete example of this synergy: in 2023, we won the first AI contest of the European Patent Office on classifying patents and published two papers at major AI conferences that introduced novel methods for using Large Language Models (LLMs) in a cost-optimized way.

We give our clients and partners the power to be one step ahead in the productization of AI advancements, and we ensure our platform is always aligned with the latest developments and Al landscape evolution.

The initial global excitement for AI-powered services such as ChatGPT is replaced by skepticism and uncertainty whether AI could truly lead technological breakthroughs in the near future. Tell us more about modern AI capabilities and future opportunities of the technology.

ChatGPT has played a significant role in shaping the public perception about AI, demonstrating that it can be both impressive and occasionally fallible – and we are fine with it. This has opened the door for broader acceptance and experimentation with AI, and has put us, humans, in the driver’s seat and AI in the role of the copilot.

Perhaps the most widely applicable modern AI capability is the "talk to my data" metaphor, where anyone can upload their documents and files and use a chat interface to converse about the information contained in them. Users can seek answers over potentially large and complex data, make followup questions, simulate scenarios, and even create custom visualizations on-the-fly. This is a very powerful building block that opens up new directions for AI Assistants. One example is the field of training and education where we can already see the first generation of AI tutors promising to enhance learning with an interactive and personalized experience.

A more profound change is that AI is on route to transforming apps and services at large, giving them a new level of autonomy to make decisions and act on our behalf. This brings challenges and opportunities both at a technical and a societal level in adopting a new synergistic way of  living with technology. It becomes a major opportunity at a national level even to embrace this change and plan for the resources needed to be positioned in the center of the emerging future state of affairs.

What would you consider to have been (or are) your biggest challenge so far?

AI has fueled a number of hype cycles in the last decade, which among other things makes it difficult for non-experts to grasp what is the state-of-the-art in AI-powered commercial  chatbots.

One of our biggest challenges has been navigating the hype surrounding AI and chatbots in the market. We made a conscious decision to help our partners and clients cut through the noise and see the pragmatic value that is possible at any given time. While it can be difficult to confront the exaggerated claims and soundbites that are pervasive in the industry, we remain committed to conveying the hard truths and building trust with our clients and partners. We understand that AI can be complex and difficult to understand for non-experts, but we believe that by working together and taking things one step at a time, we can unlock the full potential of this technology and drive real results for our customers.

Ultimately it is about trust. Technology is moving fast and AI in particular can be more of a black-box even to experts sometimes. In our case we built trust step by step, one client and one partner at a time.

What are the biggest learnings from your journey so far?

It is probably a cliché, but it stands true to say that what matters the most is the people you make the journey with.

First, I should say about Dimi and me, as founders walking this path together for a little over 7 years now, that we have been very much aligned on what is the company we want to build and the value we want to bring,  and that we complement each other in the things we like to do and the things we are good at.  I would say that having alignment and complementary skills in the founding team is a prerequisite towards a smooth and successful journey.

This has been an ambient force that helped us form a shared sense of purpose and an inspiring work environment for our team. We are both very proud of our team, and we are eager to see what will come next from our collective experience and expertise.

In a similar way, our commercial relationships play a big part in our journey. Our approach to form true partnerships with the organizations we have worked with has been very rewarding and has put solid and secure grounds in moving forward.

Overall, operating in a very active and competitive space, it is the human network inside and around our team that has the greatest value and what makes us move forward with even more passion.


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