French start-up Siquance targets commercial quantum computing

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Siquance, a CEA/CNRS-inspired start-up, is a new business based in Grenoble, France, that aims to commercialise quantum computing.

As a fabless start-up, Siquance aims to become a leader in quantum technology by developing a quantum computer that is based on the same technological building blocks as standard silicon integrated circuits. To enable this, the company has developed a disruptive technology solution that aims to transform a classical transistor so that it can handle quantum bits known as qubits (the quantum equivalent of classical bits). By assembling qubits, a new type of calculator can be created to solve numerous problems that are currently beyond the scope of classical computers.

According to the company’s co-founder and director, Maud Vinet, designing this quantum computing solution on the basis of existing semiconductor technology offers the quickest path to large-scale industrialisation.

Siquance is looking to align its processes according to existing manufacturing capacities, in particular those available in French and European semiconductor factories.

Quantum computing provides a means to solve complex equations that are beyond the capacities of classical computers and offers a way forward for numerous strategic and cutting-edge industries such as healthcare, engineering, meteorology, and finance. As a disruptive technology, it also offers Europe an opportunity to even the playing field with the United States and Asia in terms of digital technology.

Siquance was founded by Maud Vinet (CEO, previously of CEA and an ERC laureate), Tristan Meunier (CTO, previously of CNRS and an ERC laureate) and François Perruchot (COO, previously of CEA). The founding trio bring to the table international expertise on silicon technology, quantum engineering and strategic marketing.

The company is looking to build on 15 years of research at CEA and CNRS, where the co-founders collaborated together for the past six years.

The start-up is supported by CEA and CNRS, both of which have invested capital and shared their expertise, R&D capacities, intellectual property and technological means. The company benefits from the support of both institutions’ ecosystems, which cover all areas of quantum technology, from fundamental research to industrialization.

A collaborative R&D programme with CEA and CNRS will contribute to support R&D development needed for Siquance and will help to foster collaboration between public research and the business world as well as enable both institutions to prolong their support of the company. Siquance also benefits from a high-level strategic board committee that will help prepare the path to industrialisation.

Commenting on the launch of the company Maud Vinet said, “Thanks to our existing semiconductor industry and the wide range of applicability of quantum calculations, Siquance would like to quickly establish itself as a leader in the field and deploy its offer throughout the global market – an ambition that could create an added-value of several hundreds of billions of euros for concerned actors in all fields of industry.”

Jean-Philippe Bourgoin, head of Quantum Programming at CEA, added, “CEA is implementing a large-scale quantum technology programme that aims to enable the emergence of disruptive solutions, which are particularly essential for quantum calculations. The goal is to anticipate the upcoming revolution in data treatment that will be made possible by the deployment of quantum computing. As a long-term player in the field of quantum technology and semiconductors, CEA is proud to see how our advances in research, our technological building blocks and our collaborations with CNRS are merging to support the creation of a novel deep tech company that is of essential value in terms of industrial and strategic sovereignty.”