Quantum computing tech startup Nord Quantique has raised $9.5 million CAD in seed funding.
Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) Capital’s Deep Tech Venture Fund and Quantonation VC co-led the all-equity round, with participation from existing stakeholder Real Ventures. Nord also previously received $100,000 from Sustainable Development Technology Canada in December 2020.
Based in Sherbrooke, Québec, and part of the Sherbrooke Quantum Innovation Zone, Nord was co-founded in 2020 by physicists Philippe St-Jean and Julien Camirand Lemyre as a spinoff from the Institut Quantique.
The startup develops hardware for fault-tolerant quantum computing. One of the major roadblocks to commercial impact with quantum computers is the large error rates in existing processors, according to Nord. Its technology aims at providing solutions to correct errors directly on the qubits.
Lemyre told BetaKit that Nord’s new capital brings its total funding to around $11 million CAD, and is earmarked for the advancement of its bosonic qubit technology in superconducting circuits.
Bosonic systems provide a richer encoding space, making it easier to prevent noisy interactions to impact the system and produce errors to preserve quantum information according to Nord.
Nord is one of the growing list of Canadian quantum computing firms that have been armed with fresh financing recently.
Vancouver’s D-Wave is looking to go public on the New York Stock Exchange through a special purpose acquisition company, and anticipates the transaction to result in up to $430.8 million CAD in gross proceeds.
D-Wave is looking to raise capital as it faces competition in the global stage from tech giants that want to gain quantum supremacy. IBM, Alphabet (Google’s parent company), Alibaba’s cloud service subsidiary Aliyun, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences are all chasing the goal, as are any number of quantum startups, according to Global Data.
BDC Capital’s investment into Nord appears to be the second financing made through its Deep Tech Venture Fund. Launched in May last year, the $200 million fund is designed to invest in and support early-stage deep tech companies.
The Deep Tech Venture Fund also invested in Toronto-based quantum tech company Xanadu’s $120 million CAD Series B round led by Bessemer Venture Partners, marking the first addition to the Deep Tech fund’s portfolio.