By Jerom Bolt
The Romanian company UiPath, a software manufacturer that was valued at $ 7 billion last year, is approaching a possible initial public listing (IPO) after helping some of the largest US companies automate their routine processes, Bloomberg reports .
After earning $ 568 million last year on the latest fundraising round, UiPath co-founder and CEO Daniel Dines sees new growth opportunities. The listing could take place at the beginning of the following year, depending on market conditions and strategic decisions.
‘We started our growth journey in 2016 and if you look at the average age of a company starting an IPO it is probably seven years, so there is no reason to rush. You need to become a public company at some point in order to allow your employees to gain more liquidity, to offer them stock options. We are close to this point, “said Daniel Dines, in an interview with Bloomberg.
Established in Romania in 2005 under the name DeskOver and renamed UiPath in 2015, the company has clients including entities such as the CIA, US naval forces, McDonald’s Corp, Duracell and Swiss Re. Last year, the company had $ 360 million in revenue and attracted funding from investors such as Sequoia, CapitalG, Wellington Management, Sands Capital and others.
‘Although, from a technical point of view, UiPath can start an IPO I don’t think they will do that. They already have significant funds they’ve raised, a billion dollars, and they don’t have to tie their hands back in the capital market, “says Kathy Gao, an analyst at BloombergNEF. According to her, the only automation company that started an IPO is Blue Prism, which wanted to issue additional shares to cover its operating losses last year but had difficulty obtaining shareholder approval.
UiPath first developed a web browser for consumers but, according to co-founder Daniel Dines, gave up after realizing that its technology can be used as a robotic aid for many repetitive tasks (Robotic Process Automation-RPA no) .
UiPath, which in 2018 became the first unicorn in Romania, competes with other software providers such as Blue Prism Group Plc, Kofax and Automation Anywhere Inc. Daniel Dines ruled out the possibility for UiPath to make purchases in the near future and did not provide financial details on the possible IPO.
‘We see increased competition, even Microsoft said they will come up with an RPA solution. This is good news for the industry, ”said Daniel Dines. According to him, a key area to be followed is the use of UiPath to help hospitals fight the coronavirus epidemic to prevent blockages and speed up diagnoses. “RPA has become an important sector and many companies have plans to implement it,” said Dines.
By Jerom Bolt