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Robotic process automation competition becomes 'intense'

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Global robotic process automation (RPA) software revenue is forecast to reach $1.3 billion in 2019.

This is according to Gartner research, which showed RPA software revenue increased by 63.1% to reach $846 million in 2018.

“The RPA market has grown since our last forecast, driven by digital business demands as organisations look for straight-through processing,” says Fabrizio Biscotti, research VP at Gartner. “Competition is intense, with nine of the top 10 vendors changing market share position in 2018.”

In 2018, the top five RPA software vendors accounted for 46.3% of the total market, led by UiPath (13%), Automation Anywhere (12.8%), Blue Prism (8.4%), NICE (7.3%) and Pegasystems (4.8%).

The research and advisory firm highlights that digital transformation efforts are driving RPA adoption, noting the biggest adopters are banks, insurance companies, telcos and utility companies.

These organisations, says Gartner, traditionally have many legacy systems and choose RPA solutions to ensure integration functionality.

“The ability to integrate legacy systems is the key driver for RPA projects. By using this technology, organisations can quickly accelerate their digital transformation initiatives, while unlocking the value associated with past technology investments,” according to Biscotti.

Further, Gartner expects the RPA software market to look very different three years from now. Large software companies, such as IBM, Microsoft and SAP, are partnering with or acquiring RPA software providers, which mean they are increasing the awareness and traction of RPA software in their sizable customer bases.

At the same time, new vendors are seizing the opportunity to adapt traditional RPA capabilities for digital business demands, such as event stream processing and real-time analytics.

“This is an exciting time for RPA vendors,” notes Biscotti. “However, the current top players will face increasing competition, as new entrants will continue to enter a market whose fast evolution is blurring the lines distinguishing RPA from other automation technologies, such as optical character recognition and artificial intelligence.”

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