Today, UIPath announced that it is to acquire UK-based Re:Infer, and quite frankly, it’s one of the most interesting deals of recent few years. Deep Analysis came across Re:Infer late in 2021 and subsequently met with and wrote about them earlier this year, and in that report stated that it would be a good acquisition candidate. Overall though, what was clear to us was that Re:Infer was one of the standout innovative products we had come across in a long time. You can read our full report here, but as our report summary states:
Determining the intent of communications and messages has immense potential to add a missing piece to the enterprise automation jigsaw puzzle. Re: infer’s AI platform can convert unstructured communications into structured data to analyze intent.
And with that concise summary, you may be none the wiser, and a full read of the report is worth the effort to delve deeper into a fascinating technology set that leverages NLP and Deep Learning Sentence Models. In essence, Re:Infer goes much further than most in figuring out the actual intent of the words and sentences in a document, email, chat or file sitting on a file server.
UIPath is on an interesting journey, racing from a pure play RPA business to building out a broad, deep, and hopefully, for them, a future-proof enterprise automation platform to duke it out at the top of the market with the likes of Pega and Appian. But what makes this deal of particular interest to us is that in the world of BPM and RPA, vendor marketing talks a lot about AI & Machine Learning, but in reality, there is often little to see beyond a lot of smoke and a few mirrors. Few sectors are more guilty of ‘AI Washing’ than those in enterprise automation. So it’s a welcome sight to see some serious hardcore, and valuable AI added to the mix.
As always, we must point out the obvious caveat that any acquisition comes with risks. Only time will tell how well UIPath integrates, embraces, and uses the technology features and functions that Re:Infer brings. Similarly, it’s far too early to tell whether the small London-based team of Re:Infer will adjust to and be absorbed into a much larger firm like UIPath. But it is also worth noting that UiPath gets more than technology; they also get some of the brightest machine learning scientists to come out of the famed University College of London (UCL) Centre for AI Research.
Still, from a tech watcher’s perspective, this one checks the boxes, and it’s one we will be watching closely over the coming few years. In our estimation, UIPath has likely picked up an excellent deal here.