RPA Technologies & Microsoft Japan Collaboration in the RPA/AI Field—RPA Technologies to Introduce Cloud RPA Robot as a Service on Azure for Promoting Work-Style Reforms

2018.07.25

Available from Middle of August 2018

Working with Microsoft Japan Co., Ltd., (hereinafter “Microsoft Japan”), RPA Technologies Inc. (hereinafter “RPA Technologies”), a subsidiary of RPA Holdings, Inc. (Minato-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director Tomomichi Takahashi; hereinafter “RPA Holdings”) that provides core technology for robotic process automation (RPA) and digital labor, has created various RPA tools, such as RPA Technologies’ BizRobo! and Blue Prism, and a handwriting OCR on Microsoft Azure (hereinafter “Azure”), a cloud platform provided by Microsoft Japan. The two companies have also jointly developed Robot as a Service on Azure, an RPA work-style reform cloud platform that lowers the hurdles to introducing RPA and will promote greater use of RPA. The product is expected to be introduced through RPA Holdings’ network in the middle of August 2018.

Japan is now confronting the problem of a shrinking labor force as the birthrate falls and its population rapidly grays, and there is a need for greater productivity and reforms to how people work. RPA, which is also referred to as digital labor, automates and increases the efficiency of white-collar operations and is thus drawing attention. In recent years, the use of RPA has begun to spread from major corporations to small and medium-size companies. Not limited to the automation of routine tasks, RPA can be applied to a wider range of tasks and made more sophisticated by linking it to OCR technology and AI.

As a result of its collaboration with Microsoft Japan, RPA Technologies is introducing both Azure cloud-based RPA and Robot as a Service on Azure, which makes it possible to promote work-style reforms that make immediate use of RPA because it is bundled with not only an information portal site that also provides educational material indispensable to develop and operate robots but also AI products. The partnership has resulted in a package that allows the use of products provided by England-based Blue Prism, a leader in the field of enterprise RPA, on Azure with a single license and thus lowers the hurdles to introducing true RPA and spreads its use. In the field of AI, the service includes Flax Scanner, an AI-based handwriting OCR engine provided by Cinnamon Inc., making it possible to offer advanced operation automation that combines RPA and AI through a single service.

Using the various AI and cloud technologies provided by Microsoft Japan, RPA Technologies will introduce original robots to increase the capabilities of software robots constructed using RPA tools, offer RPA templates built particularly for Microsoft products to automate operations and other products, and contribute to work-style reforms in Japan by increasing the productivity of white-collar operations.

■Comment by RPA Technologies President Nobuyuki Osumi
As the number of companies that introduce RPA increases and it becomes common to make use of RPA, the need for related products among regional entities and small customers will grow. Having adopted the mission of popularizing and increasing the sophistication of RPA, RPA Technologies wants to play a useful role in customers’ work-style reforms by using cloud technology to lower the hurdles to introducing RPA products and provide more advanced RPA linked to AI.
I am confident that this collaboration with Microsoft in the field of RPA is not only a symbolic effort to spur on the popularization and advancement of RPA but will also make it possible to provide services from a completely different perspective through further collaboration among the two companies in the field of AI.

 
■Comment by Microsoft Japan Operating Officer and Cloud & Enterprise Business Division Manager Satoshi Asano
Microsoft Japan is extremely happy that as part of its’ robotic process automation (RPA) business, RPA Technologies has introduced Robot as a Service on Azure, a cloud platform to promote work-style reforms. Because the solution is being provided on Azure, it is possible for customers not only to quickly and flexibility create and introduce a cloud environment necessary for RPA but also to develop new functions using AI. It is expected that providing Robot as a Service on Azure will contribute to efforts by Japanese companies to reform work styles.

About RPA Technologies Inc. (http://rpa-technologies.com/)
Headquarters: ARK Mori Building (13F), 1-12-32 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Founded: July 2013
Founded by OPEN ASSOCIATES JAPAN Inc. (present-day RPA Holdings; TSE Mothers; securities code, 6572), which invests in the new businesses of client companies and provides consulting services, as a wholly-owned subsidiary through a spin off.
Representative: President Nobuyuki Osumi
Capital: 30 million yen
Business: Developing, designing, manufacturing, selling, and importing/exporting computers, peripheral devices, and related software; providing information processing and consulting services; providing information; conducting marketing research; and conducting data collection and analysis