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Quantum breakthrough: Female-led Cambridge startup chips £7M funding for building super-advanced quantum network

Carmen Palacios-Berraquero-1

Cambridge-based Nu Quantum, a company working on super-advanced quantum networking, has just raised a big £7 million in funding. The round is led by Amadeus Capital Partners, Expeditions Fund, and IQ Capital, with increased commitment from Seed investors Ahren Capital; Seraphim Capital; University of Cambridge and Martlet. Some new investors, like Presidio Ventures backed by Sumitomo Corporation, the National Security Strategic Investment Fund (NSSIF), and Deeptech Labs, also chipped in.

This new funding comes after Nu Quantum’s £2.1 million seed round in September 2020, which helped them grow and build partnerships. The latest funding will help them move closer to having robust and usable quantum systems.

What’s exciting about Nu Quantum?

Nu Quantum is already making strides in building a scalable quantum network. This network is essential for making quantum computers more practical and unlocking their full potential for various world-changing applications. Today’s quantum computers are somewhat limited because they’re made up of tiny parts called qubits, and it’s really hard to assemble a lot of them, which is what’s needed for solving big, important problems.

Instead of trying to build one huge core, Nu Quantum, taking a smarter approach, are connecting many smaller cores, each with 10s to 1000s of qubits, using their scalable quantum network. They’ve created something called a Quantum Networking Unit (QNU), which can efficiently link these smaller Quantum Processing Units (QPUs) to make a more powerful quantum computer. This technology can work with different types of qubits and speed up the development of quantum computing.

Commenting on the funding, Dr. Carmen Palacios, Founder and CEO of Nu Quantum, said: “Large-scale, fault-tolerant quantum computing will bring about the technological revolution of our generation. We have built an exceptional team dedicated to the mission of building the quantum networking infrastructure necessary to make this a reality. We are grateful to the investors who share our vision for their support as we scale and commercialise our solution.”

Dr. Manjari Chandran-Ramesh, Partner at Amadeus Capital Partners said: “The ability to apply quantum computing at scale is what’s needed to unlock the potential of this revolutionary advancement in processing power. Nu Quantum’s systems architecture approach, driven by quantum entanglement, is unique in the market today and has great commercial potential. Further, its product solution is poised to be able to adapt to any type of qubit technology, which makes the impact far-reaching. We are delighted to grow this partnership and work with new and existing investors on this next exciting chapter of Nu Quantum’s journey.”

Kerry Baldwin, Managing Partner at IQ Capital, said: “The important part that networking will play in future quantum systems is clear and Nu Quantum is one of the most technologically advanced quantum networking companies in the world today. We are proud to continue supporting them in realising their vision of a qubit modality-agnostic quantum networking platform. This new funding will allow them to ramp up work on existing projects and engage with a broad range of commercial partners in the quantum computing ecosystem.”

Richard Crosfield, Investment Director at Presidio Ventures Europe, said: “Quantum computers are expected to significantly impact many industries, from pharma to financial services, if they can overcome the limitations that arise when increasing the logical qubit count. We believe that the quantum optical networking technology that Nu Quantum’s fantastic team is building is the most practical solution to address these critical scalability limits, which all manufacturers of quantum computers will be facing very soon.”

Mikolaj Firlej, Managing Partner at Expeditions Fund, said: “This funding marks an important step for Nu Quantum to build quantum-based networks that transmits quantum bits [qubits] from quantum servers at high-speeds to handle various commercial-grade applications. We were looking for various quantum networking companies, but we believe that Nu Quantum represents the most advanced effort in this space globally. We believe that Carmen and team have the potential to do what Cisco once did for classical computers – that is, to build the interconnectivity layer for a new generation of computers.’

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