The month of October again saw a lot of investment in cloud, data and AI startups. Notable among them is Automation Anywhere, Inc., a global leader in robotic process automation (RPA), which secured $200 million in financing from Silicon Valley Bank, SVB Capital and Hercules Capital, Inc.
Meanwhile, the trend of private equity firms whose shares have taken a beating this year continues with KnowBe4 Inc agreeing to go private with Vista Equity Partners, the latest cybersecurity firm, in a sweet $4.6 billion deal. In this year’s market downturn. In another billion dollar deal, ForgeRock, a global digital identity leader, has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Thoma Bravo, a leading software investment firm, in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $2.3 billion.
Here’s a quick look at some of the funding deals and acquisitions that took place in the cloud, data and AI space in October.
RPA Leader Automation Anywhere Raises $200 Mn Funding
Automation Anywhere, Inc., a global leader in robotic process automation (RPA), Silicon Valley Bank, SVB Capital, and Hercules Capital, Inc. Received $200 million in financing from The financing is intended to provide operational and strategic capital for the next several years.
Security startup Arctic Wolf raised $401 million in convertible debt
Cybersecurity company Arctic Wolf raised $401 million in convertible notes led by existing investor Owl Rock, the latest example of late-stage startups seeking alternative financing to bridge the longer-than-expected gap between funding rounds and initial public offerings (IPOs). The fundraising, which also saw participation from Viking Global Investors, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and Neuberger Berman, will help the company grow its balance sheet and fund potential acquisitions.
Singapore-based insurtech bolttech secures Series B investment
BoltTech, one of the world’s fastest growing international insurtech companies, announced that Tokyo Marine, along with other shareholders, will lead BoltTech’s Series B funding round. BoltTech, Singapore’s only homegrown insurtech unicorn, at an up-round valuation of approximately US$1.5 billion, a year after closing the largest Series A funding round for an insurtech.
WATI (WhatsApp Team Inbox) Raises $23M in Series B, Powering WhatsApp for Businesses in SEA
WATI (WhatsApp Team Inbox), a customer and sales engagement tool, announced $23M Series B funding, led by Tiger Global with participation from existing investors Sequoia Capital India and Southeast Asia, as well as new investors DST Global Partners and Shopify. This is Shopify’s first venture investment in a startup operating in the Southeast Asia region. The Series B comes hot on the heels of an $8.3M Series A round 10 months ago; In total, WATI has raised more than $35M since 2020. WATI plans to use the Series B funding to scale teams, expand production and expand customer base in India and key markets.
Toku Announces Expanded Series A Funding to $10M to Accelerate APAC Growth
Toku, Asia Pacific’s (APAC) dedicated cloud communications provider, announced a US$5 million expansion for its Series A round, bringing its total funding to US$10 million. The expansion round was led by Delivery Hero Ventures and Malaysia’s OSK Ventures International with participation from Betatron Venture Group. Toku will tap the new funding expansion to rapidly establish a local presence in Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, South Korea and the Philippines. It aims to double its total number to 200 by 2024.
ATS acquires APAC based systems integrator ZI-ARGUS
ATS Automation Tooling Systems Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire ZI-ARGUS (“ZIA”), a subsidiary of the Juelig Group. ZIA is a leading independent automation systems integrator in the ASEAN region and Australia, with a focus on process control, factory floor automation, data center and Industry 4.0 digitization solutions. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. ZIA will join ATS’s Process Automation Solutions (“PA”) business, a leading provider of complete automation solutions for the process and manufacturing industries. ZIA will significantly strengthen PA’s position in the region’s attractive high-growth automation and digitalization market with proven expertise for customers in Pharma, Food & Beverage, Consumer Goods, Petrochemical, Biochemical and Data Centers, while accelerating PA’s digitization journey. The transaction is subject to the fulfillment of certain closing conditions.
Qualys Acquires Blue Hexagon’s AI/Machine Learning Platform
Qualys, Inc. (NASDAQ: QLYS), a leading provider of disruptive and disruptive cloud-based IT, security and compliance solutions, today announced it has acquired the assets of Blue Hexagon. It brings AI/Machine Learning (AI/ML) to the Qualis Cloud Platform to help transform petabytes of highly aggregated data into meaningful insights for customers. The acquisition will enable Qualys to leverage its powerful cloud platform and its 10 trillion data points to uncover behavioral patterns including proactive vulnerability exploitation, advanced network threat identification and adaptive risk mitigation across assets and applications.
Endava announced the acquisition of Lexicon, Australia
Endava (NYSE “DAVA”) announced the acquisition of Lexicon Digital Pty Ltd and Lexicon Consolidated Holdings Pty Ltd, headquartered in Melbourne, Australia (“Lexicon”). Lexicon is an Australian-based technology consulting, design and engineering firm that partners with clients to create new digital solutions using agile delivery methods or to accelerate digital transformation programs in enterprise systems, products and IoT. The acquisition of Lexicon expands Endava’s existing presence in Australia and provides a strong foundation for rapid in-market growth.
Capgemini acquires Quorsus to strengthen its capital markets service offering
Capgemini announced the acquisition of a UK-based firm specializing in advisory services to financial institutions in post-trade technology, operations, regulatory solutions and market infrastructure. His specific industry focus and expertise will allow Capgemini to further assist its capital markets clients in meeting not only the growing regulatory requirements but also the need for strategic yet efficient operations throughout the business lifecycle.
Digital identity leader ForgeRock will be acquired by Thoma Bravo for $2.3 billion
ForgeRock, a global digital identity leader, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Thoma Bravo, a leading software investment firm, for $23.25 per share, in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $2.3 billion. With this acquisition, Thoma Bravo is excited to partner with ForgeRock to leverage its deep sector expertise and support the company in capitalizing on this huge market opportunity.
Cybersecurity firm KnowBe4 will go private in a $4.6 billion deal with Vista Equity Partners
KnowBe4 Inc agreed to go private in a sweet $4.6 billion deal with Vista Equity Partners, the latest cybersecurity firm to be spun off by private equity in this year’s market downturn. Before Vista’s proposal, KnowBe4’s stock had lost nearly a quarter of its value in 2022, although the rise of hybrid work boosted demand for its platform, which allows businesses to conduct security awareness training including simulated phishing attacks. Private equity firms are scooping up tech companies whose shares have been hit this year by rising interest rates and worries about an economic slowdown.
Australia’s cloud-based firm ELMO Software agrees to $A500 Mn takeover offer
Australia’s ELMO Software ( ELO.AX ) has agreed to a takeover bid of about A$500 million ($319 million) from Los Angeles-based K1 Investment Management. The US group offered A$4.85 in cash per share for the cloud-based software solutions business, which operates in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
User testing will be undertaken by Thoma Bravo and Sunstone Partners for $1.3Bn
UserTesting, Inc. (NYSE: USER), a leader in video-based human insights, has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Thoma Bravo, a leading software investment firm, and Sunstone Partners for $7.50 per share, all-cash. A transaction valued at approximately $1.3 billion. Following the closing of the transaction, Thoma Bravo and Sunstone Partners intend to combine UserTesting and UserZoom, with Thoma Bravo acquiring majority control in April 2022. UserTesting’s CEO, Andy McMillan, will lead the combined company. Additionally, the combined company will benefit from the operating capabilities, capital support and industry expertise of Thoma Bravo and Sunstone Partners.
Google buys AI avatar startup for $100 million
Google acquired Alter, an artificial intelligence (AI) avatar startup company. TechCrunch reported that the tech giant bought the company for around $100 million. Alter helps creators and businesses create AI-based virtual avatars to express their virtual identity. According to reports, the acquisition is to boost the content game and compete with short-video platform – TikTok.