On Tuesday, May 19 2020, Microsoft announced that it would be acquiring Softomotive which is US-based start-up firm that develops software robots that would perform repetitive actions and automate tasks for the people who are familiar with the matter. CEO of Microsoft also mentioned that if this acquisition is successful it would be announced soon. Terms of deals were not disclosed.
On May 20, 2020 Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella confirmed that Microsoft had acquired Softomotive and now it would become a part of Microsoft’s Power Automate Platform. Satya Nadella also mentioned that Microsoft would bring RPA or Robotic process automation to legacy apps and services with this acquisition.
The financial information of the acquisition was not disclosed by either of the company.
Briefing about Softomotive
Softomotive is a US-based startup firm that specializes in developing robot process automation technology which will facilitate the companies to work efficiently by saving time and money by automating the repetition of manual tasks like data entry into spreadsheets. It was established in 2005 with its headquarters in London and more than 150 employees. In funding Softomotive raised $25 million. It has an experience of 15 years and is also the creator of Winautomation. Softomotive currently handles 9000 customers from around the world including Xerox. Softomotive’s products are used in sectors like healthcare, banking, insurance, and telecommunication. Competitor of Softomotive includes Automation Anywhere Inc. and UiPath which was currently valued at $7 billion and has been looking for an Initial Public Offer (IPO).
Microsoft which is one of the biggest software companies in the world reported quarterly results recently which turned out to be better than it was expected.
Revenue increased by 15%
Operating income increased by 25%
Net income increased by 22%
Diluted EPS increased by 23%
It can be clearly observed that Microsoft had minimal impact of COVID-19 as the remote work increased the usage of cloud computing products.
Advantages of Acquisition
In Microsoft’s Power Automate, it will use Softomotive’s tools to equip several new capabilities which will include Softomotive’s low-code desktop automation solution Win-automation. Before this acquisition, Power Automate did not feature any tools of desktop Automation. Power Automate will also provide room to Softomotive’s other flagship applications which include Process robot and server-based enterprise RPA development. It can be said that Microsoft acquired Softomotive mainly for its desktop automation skills.
Possibilities for Customers
- Customers will be provided with additional options for developing workflows in Power Automate which will enable anyone to create RPA bots either with their already existing browser-based authoring app or via a new desktop app using WinAutomation.
- Microsoft is dedicated to providing the most vigorous set of RPA capabilities in a single platform and now by acquiring Softomotive it is expanding the existing desktop automation experience which will now include Softomotive’s robust set of connectors and applications namely SAP, legacy terminal screens, Java, Citrix, etc.
- Customers will now be able to implement multiple workflows and automation simultaneously and on the same machine in order to decrease latency and increase the efficiency of bots. This would bring the same incredible scale from existing API automation to UI automation.
- To support the low code bot development, Microsoft plans to bring even more innovations developed by Softomotive in the past 15 years.
Softomotive’s CEO Marios Stavropoulos believes that their USP is the unswerving commitment to usability. They feel that since there are less than 2% of the total world’s population who can actually write code, the greatest opportunity for both process improvement and overall discovery comes from business and its user, which is why they invested so carefully in order to remove the complexity from users end and developed the most intuitive user interfaces which would enable the non-technical business as well as users to make deeper contributions by upgrading themselves into professional problem solvers and innovators.