The world is awash with bots these days — applications the run either partly or entirely using natural language processing, machine learning, computer vision and other artificial intelligence technologies to help consumers ask and answer questions, buy things and get other stuff done. In the enterprise equivalent, a company that is building something akin to this for large companies and their back-office functions has raised a sizable round of funding.
UiPath, a startup out of Romania that builds apps for businesses to automate repetitive functions like processing insurance claims, or going through employee onboarding, has raised $30 million in a Series A round of funding led by Accel. The company has been around since 2012 and until now had not announced any funding. This $30 million also includes a $1.6 million seed round it raised last year from Earlybird, Credo Ventures and Seedcamp.
The money will be used to add more sales staff and build out the product more to meet existing demand. “This investment will allow us to introduce the benefits of intelligent RPA (robotic process automation) to even more businesses around the world and remain at the forefront of a rapidly-advancing industry,” said Daniel Dines, CEO and founder of UiPath.
In its relatively short time in the market, UiPath has tapped into a window of opportunity, as more companies that employ tens of thousands of employees are looking for ways to cut costs and also reorient staff in a more efficient way.
The darkest view of this is that the humans will all eventually get replaced, creating very big questions about where we are going as a society and economy. The more optimistic is that these companies are looking for ways to free up its workers from more mundane things to focus on tasks that require more human interaction and intelligence.