In an industry that tends to concentrate its startup energy in Silicon Valley, Kryon defies convention. The robotics process automation (RPA) startup has its US headquarters in New Jersey. The location didn't matter when it came to getting investment capital as the company announced a healthy $12 million Series A today.
The round was led led by Aquiline Technology Growth (ATG) and Vertex Ventures.
RPA is growing field and Kryon is in the right place at the right time, a technology area that is not necessarily well understood (yet), but has tremendous potential. These aren't robots in the R2D2 sense. They are virtual intelligent assistants that automate repetitive processes by mimicking what humans do.
We've seen workflow automation before, but that has tended to be a rule-based approach. There obviously has to be a logic behind the process as with workflow automation tools, but with RPA it is actually doing the work in the same way a human worker would. This distinction is what differentiates this technology from workflow tools that came before it, Harel Tayeb, CEO at Kryon told TechCrunch.
With RPA, the software is actually writing emails, filling in spreadsheets, and taking other actions This kind of software could have a place inside many companies, but insurance and financial services in particular. These companies have the underlying logic in their processes that Tayeb described and could benefit from automating some labor-intensive parts of these workflows.
Ultimately it could free up human workers to do the the kind of interactions they do best, while liberating them from the mundane parts of the job. "Say it takes 24 hours to complete a purchase order. The robot can do it much faster and salespeople can sell more products," Tayeb said.
The company, which currently has 50 employees and 100 customers, also works with partners and consultants who are implementing the Kryon solution inside organizations. They plan to use the money from today's investment to expand sales and marketing, as well engineering to continue building the next generation of RPA technology.
The next step is automated process discovery where Kryon can identify processes that could benefit from this kind of automation. "One of the things we are going to do is provide process discovery using deep learning to understand processes and generate process automation automatically," he said.