UiPath rings the bell at the NYSE
Sometimes the most surprising outcomes originate from unexpected beginnings and we are honored to be part of the UiPath story.
Founded in Bucharest, and now headquartered in New York City, UiPath rang the bell this morning at the NYSE, becoming the largest public cloud company born in Europe. Congratulations to Daniel Dines and the UiPath team for this incredible accomplishment!
UiPath was founded in Bucharest in 2005, selling computer vision technology to OEMs. It was a difficult time of exploration and iteration, as many founders experience, and it took 10 long years to build the company from $0 to $1mm in revenue, a difficult phase. During those early days, Daniel and the team learned the importance of humility and it became the cornerstone of the company’s culture:
“Humility gives you the opportunity to course-correct fast. I think this is the most important business lesson that I ever had in my life”
– Daniel Dines
The key breakthrough came in 2015 when Daniel and his co-founder Marius saw how computer vision could be used to emulate human behavior and automate repetitive tasks for every range of business processes. With this vision in mind and a small 10 person team, UiPath shifted course, launched its first robotic process automation (RPA) and went on to become one of the fastest-growing cloud companies of its generation. After going $0 to $1mm in their first 10 years, UiPath has now hockey-sticked to over $600mm in revenue in 2020, and the automation market is still in early innings.
When we got to know Daniel in late 2016, we saw someone who was thinking differently. Born behind the iron curtain and despite the humble beginnings of UiPath, Daniel had global ambitions from the offset. In early 2017, while the company only had single-digit revenue, it was already operating in North America, Europe, India and Japan.
Leading Enterprise Automation Platform
In 2017, RPA product was nascent and still very much under the radar, but we had a strong thesis around enterprise automation and AI. As digital transformation started to be on the agenda of large enterprises, Daniel’s vision of “one robot for every person” really resonated. Several signs also pointed to something special happening around RPA. For example, UiPath was able to sign a high six-figure deal with a Fortune 50 company in less than four months. Typically, it would take an early-stage start-up 12+ months to land a deal like this.
As UiPath evolved from RPA to a full enterprise automation platform, the flywheel accelerated and customers kept buying more.
“…the [UiPath] platform can be used successfully across our organization –from individuals to departments –to deliver value swiftly, easily and inexpensively.”
– Business Enablement Executive, BMO-Harris Banks
A meteoric rise to market leadership
While UiPath is known as an “overnight success” by many, the reality is that after growing from $0mm to $1mm in its first 10 years, UiPath was able to grow $1mm to $600mm in the following 5 years. UiPath quickly emerged as the market leader in the Forrester Wave quadrant as the technology evolved from automating mostly finance and accounting processes to address processes across all industries and functions.
We feel privileged to have shared this unique journey with Daniel and the team from the early days when they chose us to lead their Series A. As the company rapidly grew, so did the need for capital and we offered to lead the series B from our global growth fund. It has been a pleasure to support the company in its fast growth over these past 4 years, and we are deeply grateful for the opportunity.
At Accel, we understand that innovation can come from anywhere and have had the pleasure of working with founders around the globe such as Stewart Butterfield (Slack from Vancouver), Daniel Ek (Spotify from Stockholm), Ryan Smith (Qualtrics from Provo), Scott Farquhar and Mike Cannon-Brookes (Atlassian from Sydney), and many others. Daniel Dines (UiPath from Bucharest) is yet another great example of this growing trend. The company became the first Cloud decacorn born in Europe last year and today’s public market entry is another notable milestone in their journey.
Today, we are very excited to see UiPath following the path of other cloud leaders from around the world. Big congrats again to Daniel and his team for this amazing accomplishment. It's been a privilege for us to be part of this journey and we can’t wait to keep supporting this next phase of the company.
- The Global Partners of Accel