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Cambridge Innovation Capital Discusses Quantum Technology Investments

By IQT News posted 07 Oct 2020

(Forbes) Trevor Clawson, a UK based-contributor to Forbes, provides a background on quantum computing and turns to an excellent interview with Andrew Williamson, a managing partner at Cambridge Innovation Capital is one of those on the lookout for quantum computing investment opportunities. CIC specializes in backing businesses with an affiliation to Cambridge University, with a focus on deep technology, medtech and biotech. To date, it has made just one quantum computing investment – software specialist River Lane – but Williamson sees the field as an emerging area of interest. And as he acknowledges, he has had something of a change of heart in this regard.
For a long time, I thought quantum computing was going to be one of those sectors that was 20 years away and always would be,” he says. “I was wrong, dramatic progress has been made in the hardware.”
That said, Williamson would be cautious about hardware investment, seeing it as high risk. Software, however, is another matter.
However, as he stresses, quantum computing is not going to become mainstream or ubiquitous. “It will be used when it is needed.” With quantum machines, we will have QPUs (Quantum bit processing units) providing firepower for projects that would benefit from ultra fast processing.
Williamson sees access to talent as a key issue. A bit like A.I. a few years ago, universities are not turning out graduates with quantum skills. Those skills tend to be nurtured either at post-graduate level or learned while working on projects. The skillsets also cross disciplines. Williamson cites River Lane again. “The founder Steve Brierley is mathematician. Around him there are computer engineers, physicists and other mathematicians.”

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