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Automation: RPA Speeds M&A Activities

By Dick Weisinger

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is the application of technology tools for automating business processes. Standard RPA tools include automating the mapping of data between different applications, automated processing of forms and applications, automated response to emails, aggregation of case information for use during call center calls.

Global RPA revenuses were estimated to be more than $2 billion in 2020 and are growing at a 31 percent annual rate over the next five years, according to Research and Markets.

Forrester’s vision of RPA is that automation will touch many business processes, creating an automation fabric where automation converges and combines with other technologies.

Leslie Joseph, Principal Analyst at Forrester, said that “companies are starting to realize the next stage of digital transformation will be through automation.”

RPA has been called the perfect tool for use as part of M&A activity to rapidly merge and consolidate system data from two or more businesses.

William Miller, partner at Ernst and Young, wrote that “the power of RPA and its speed of implementation will, no doubt, impact the execution of M&A. The consensus among leading researchers is that potentially up to 30% to 40% of existing business processes can be automated by RPA technology in divestitures and acquisitions.”

Deloitte, said that “the introduction of next-generation tools, specifically cognitive intelligence and robotic process automation (RPA), can help to combat issues and create an opportunity to reduce risk and accelerate the M&A life cycle.”

It seems ironic that the RPA-centered vendors that create the tools for speeding up M&A business assimulation are now top M&A targets themselves.

Recent RPA business M&A activity includes the Salesforce acquisition of Servicetrace RPA, the ServiceNow acquisition of Intellibot, the IBM acquisition of WDG, the Microsoft acquisition of Softmotive, the Hyland Software acquisition of Another Monday,and Tibco’s puchase of Blue Prism.

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