UiPath former GC eyes the legal automation market
UiPath, the Romanian Robotic Process Automation (RPA) company, recently closed its $225 million Series E funding round, with a $10.2 billion post-money valuation. Moreover, its former GC is creating a separate legal automation business line for both existing and new customers.
The funding came from Alkeon Capital Management (the lead) and also involved Accel, Coatue, Dragoneer, IVP, Madrona Venture Group, Sequoia Capital, Tencent, Tiger Global, Wellington, and T. Rowe Price.
Daniel Dines, UiPath’s CEO, plans to use the proceeds mainly to scale the Company’s offering and continue research in AI-based automation.
Romanian entrepreneurs, Marius Tîrcă and Daniel Dines, started the UiPath in 2005 out of Bucharest. Following its explosive growth, the Company eventually expanded to New York, London, Bangalore, Paris, Washington, D.C., and Tokyo.
UiPath grew from about 100 users in 2017 to over 750,000 in 2019. Additionally, per UiPath, its solutions serve over 65% of Fortune 500. Some of the logos are GE, Virgin Media, Airbus, Google, Autodesk, NASA, HP, Fujifilm, McCormick, DHL, and many others.
RPA in the present day
As we have written before, Robotic Process Automation has vast applications (and a bright future indeed).
RPA is the technology that automates mundane tasks traditionally performed by people. It is clear why startup (and other cost-conscious) companies are inclined to adopt it quickly. About 10% of all startups nowadays employ more “bots” than humans in their operations.
According to some market analysis, the RPA market could hit $432 billion by as close as 2022. Moreover, bots could run at least a third of all activities in over 60% of professions.
(naturally, the business of law is one of the sectors that are prone to automation in certain aspects - we have listed some of the use-cases)
As mentioned before, RPA is a broader term that involves both intelligent automation (i.e., AI), as well as automation without its cognitive component. Given the present learning curve and investment in training AI solutions, the “unintelligent” RPA is low-hanging fruit that immediately yields high ROI.
Many law firms nowadays are jumping aboard the AI train. Some biglaw firms (known to our team) are starting their experiments and early trials with UiPath specifically.
UiPath and legal services automation
Vasile Tiple, the former UiPath’s GC, has recently shifted his focus towards a new business line. Namely, he aims to enhance their internal tools, processes, and logic, and offer legal processes and services automation to (quite likely)both in-house teams and law firms.
(we have reached Tiple for a comment, and expect a follow-up)
It seems as though Tiple will be wearing multiple hats in this latest venture. He will cover the Product Management role (i.e., advising legal-specific features for the platform roadmap) as well as the key partnerships with strategic legal tech vendors.
It feels as UiPath aims to establish a complete ecosystem for delivering legal services in a profoundly different way. It will be interesting to follow how they move forth with their platform approach.
One thing is for sure - legal service delivery will never be the same. The RPA trend and legal automation are practically warranted to stay.
CL News Team closely follows events that could potentially shape legal services delivery, the business of law, and influence the transformation of the legal space.
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