RPA service provider secures US$50m investment
Chinese tech startup Laiye, which offers a robotic process automation (RPA) service, said it received US$50 million in the latest round of financing, with the Shanghai Artificial Intelligence Industry Equity Investment Fund one of the leading investors.
RPA, often known as software robotics, is a form of business process automation technology based on software and AI innovations. It’s one of the fastest growing technologies for digital transformation in China.
Laiye’s enterprise business achieved a positive cashflow and the chatbot business managed profitability in the fourth quarter of 2020, while its annual RPA software subscription revenue continued to soar. The new funding will be used for global expansion and product development, said Li Wei, Laiye’s co-CEO and president.
By 2025, digital workforces and intelligent automation will reach all walks of life as long as more human workers can be up-skilled with a knowledge of RPA and AI, according to Laiye.
The funding round was led by Ping An Global Voyager Fund and the Shanghai AI fund, with participation from Lightspeed China Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Sequoia Capital China and Wu Capital.
The Shanghai AI fund was founded during the WAIC conference in 2019, with major investors including state-owned giants such as Shanghai Electric.
Shanghai is speeding up its digital transformation in three strategic sectors — AI, chips and bio-medicine.
James Mi, founding partner of early investor Lightspeed China, said: “We have witnessed its growth toward becoming China’s leading firm in intelligent automation and building China's biggest developer community and partner ecosystem.”