Finland’s IQM Quantum Fabrication Facility Gets $36.7M USD Boost From the European Investment Bank
(HPCWire) The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted €35 million ($36.7M USD) to IQM Quantum Computers to accelerate the development and commercialization of its quantum processors built at Europe’s first quantum-dedicated fabrication facilities in Espoo, Finland. The loan is part of the European Guarantee Fund’s venture debt product introduced to provide liquidity to small and medium-sized companies affected by the pandemic. In addition, IQM benefited from EIB Advisory Services support in preparation for the EIB financing application.
This announcement follows IQM’s announcement in November of the opening of its first fabrication facility in Finland. The initial tranche of the EIB funds will be used for expanding the facility, accelerating material research and developing quantum processors.
Upon receiving this first debt financing from the EIB, IQM’s Chief Executive Dr. Jan Goetz said, “Today’s chips shortage has exposed just how dependent the world is on semiconductor manufacturers in Asia. Quantum processors give us an opportunity to learn from this and become self-reliant first, and a global provider for quantum chips in the future. This EIB loan supports us in building more balanced and resilient quantum development in Europe. We are already working on the most advanced quantum technology in Europe and this loan will also help us create the next-generation European quantum ecosystem.”
EIB President Werner Hoyer said: “Quantum computing is still at an early stage. However, it has the potential to revolutionize many sectors, from drug and vaccine development to cybersecurity. Given the scale of the potential impact, global competition in quantum computing is fierce. Ensuring that companies such as IQM are well-funded is key to positioning Europe as a technological leader worldwide.”
EIB Vice-President Thomas Östros added: “As we consider quantum computing as a sector of strategic importance, we are glad to support the Finland-based company IQM. With our financing, we not only sustain and create jobs within a highly innovative industry, but we also place ourselves squarely behind technological know-how. Europe has a strong tradition of quantum research, and funding IQM ensures that the results of this research will be put into practice in real-world innovations.”
This financing announcement follows other news regarding IQM’s open-source processor design software KQCircuits, the Q-Exa project for quantum acceleration for HPC centers, and the opening of the quantum fabrication facility. With this funding, IQM will have full control over quantum processor development and strengthen its European leadership.
Sandra K. Helsel, Ph.D. has been researching and reporting on frontier technologies since 1990. She has her Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.