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Automation Anywhere, a 15 year-old robotic process automation company, raised $250 million in Series A funding at a $1.8 billion post-money valuation.

Why it's a big deal: Because the San Jose, Calif.-based company is a test case for the labor force replacement debate, with an outsourced, cognitive bot army that helps global enterprises automate rote tasks like processing insurance claims and mortgage applications.

Per Bernadette Tansey, Xconomy:

"Part of Automation Anywhere’s mission, CEO Mihir Shukla says, is also to use the power of automation to 'remove the mundane from everybody’s life,' allowing human workers to focus on higher-order tasks. From his own observations, he says, the transformation doesn’t shrink the human workforce at client companies. Such companies attract more applicants, Shukla says, because they move fast and create more jobs."

NEA and Goldman Sachs co-led the round, and were joined by General Atlantic and World Innovation Lab.

Go deeper

Collins helps contractor before pro-Susan PAC gets donation

Sen. Susan Collins during her reelection campaign. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A PAC backing Sen. Susan Collins in her high-stakes reelection campaign received $150,000 from an entity linked to the wife of a defense contractor whose firm Collins helped land a federal contract, new public records show.

Why it matters: The executive, Martin Kao of Honolulu, leaned heavily on his political connections to boost his business, federal prosecutors say in an ongoing criminal case against him. The donation linked to Kao was veiled until last week.

How cutting GOP corporate cash could backfire

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Companies pulling back on political donations, particularly to members of Congress who voted against certifying President Biden's election win, could inadvertently push Republicans to embrace their party's rightward fringe.

Why it matters: Scores of corporate PACs have paused, scaled back or entirely abandoned their political giving programs. While designed to distance those companies from events that coincided with this month's deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol, research suggests the moves could actually empower the far-right.

9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Kaine, Collins pitch Senate colleagues on censuring Trump

Sen. Tim Kaine speaks with Sen. Susan Collins. Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP via Getty Images

Sens. Tim Kaine and Susan Collins are privately pitching their colleagues on a bipartisan resolution censuring former President Trump, three sources familiar with the discussions tell Axios.

Why it matters: Senators are looking for a way to condemn Trump on the record as it becomes increasingly unlikely Democrats will obtain the 17 Republican votes needed to gain a conviction in his second impeachment.