UiPath, the First Romanian-American Unicorn. “We invested the constant effort in time, people and money”

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  • Interview with Răzvan Atim, Head of Sales for UiPath.

by Tiberiu Dianu

 

Răzvan Atim works for the UiPath company (Sales Director, March 2017 – to present; Business Development Manager, May 2007 – to present; Head of Sales for Eastern Europe, January 2018 – to present).

UiPath is a global software company that develops a platform for robotic process automation (RPA). It was founded in 2005 by the Romanian entrepreneurs Daniel Dines and Marius Târcă. The company started from Bucharest, Romania and later opened offices in New York, London, Bangalore, Paris, Singapore, Tokyo and Washington, DC. In 2016, the company had 100 customers which rose to 700 customers in 2017. In 2017, the company reported about 600 employees and moved its headquarters to New York to be closer to its international customer base. On March 2018, UiPath received a US$ 153 million investment from Accel, CapitalG, and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, valuing the company at US$ 1.1 billion and, as a result, making it the first Romanian “unicorn” (a privately held start-up company valued at over US$ 1 billion). In September 2019, UiPath was ranked #3 on the Forbes Cloud 100. The company is currently valued at US$ 7 billion.

Răzvan Atim is one of the veterans at UiPath, having joined back in 2007, when the company had only 10 employees. Working closely with UiPath’s CEO Daniel Dines, Atim has contributed to, and experienced, UiPath’s outstanding growth, driven by the undisputed customer-centric approach and a collaborative, humble company culture. In his current role as Head of Sales for Eastern Europe, Atim is responsible for the growth and success of customers and partners in the region.

During the period of October 3 and 4, 2019, Răzvan Atim attended the annual ALIANŢA/The Alliance Gala, in Washington, DC, at the Conrad Hotel and the Romanian Embassy, respectively.

On October 3, 2019, he accepted the Award for Business Innovation for the UiPath company. On October 4, 2019, Mr. Atim granted me an exclusive interview.

 

 Mr. Răzvan Atim, you are the Head of Sales for Eastern Europe for the UiPath. Describe briefly the company and your responsibilities.

UiPath is a Robotic Process Automation company, global company, for the countries, headquartered in New York, America, valued at US$ 7 billion. It’s the most successful enterprise software company in the world, with the highest and the most rapid growth so far. My attribution is to manage the opportunities in Eastern Europe. And I am an active participant into the strategy of sales, managing new teams in the emerging countries and growth markets. So I have been a sales [representative] since 2007, [in the] early stages of UiPath, and contributed a lot to the company’s growth.

Tell us, in short, your success story in America as a young Romanian-American, and feel free to mention some figures, too.

Yeah. America was a very attractive market for us since the beginning, since we started in 2005. So [in the] early, very early stages we had American customers and we continued that way in other countries. So it’s a major, an important market for us. Our investors are here, so, that directed our investment and growth here a lot. So, it’s one of the major markets at UiPath, producing a lot of revenue. So, we have the headquarters here, in New York, and here, in Washington. And there is also an RND center in Bellevue, along with another couple in India and Bucharest, Romania. In terms of numbers, as I mentioned, the focus is primarily here, in the U.S., along with others in the rest of the world, of course, but generating a lot of interest for our largest clients here. We invest a lot of efforts in terms of research and development, local support, people, all sorts of people (sale, pre-sale, technicians), to support the clients, being successful with our clients and numbers. Again, it’s a lot of focus and growing.

What advice would you give to young Romanians or Romanian-Americans willing to pursue a similar path?

Well, there is no template for that. I think we were, you know, we had all the means to be successful. We have had a very strong technology, but the product itself, and the scope of the technology, was very opportune for the market. So, we bet on that and pushed it further, and invested the constant effort in time, people and money.

 You also have a lot of determination.

Yes. You need to have that, and to have your lessons learned, to not be disappointed if you fail. Just learn from failing and continue. You have to have a product that would be not necessarily unique, but would have some advantage versus other similar products on the market If it’s unique, it’s for the better. But you need to also see, from the investor’s point of view, if there is any traction on the market for your product, right? You need to prove a strategy and a future vision for your product development or service, right? So it’s a long term path with minuses and pluses, with constraints and also advantages. You need to be strong.

 

(October 14, 2019)

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