PASQAL, Investissement Québec launch $90-million Quantum Computing initiative

The initiative intends to promote Sherbrooke, Québec as an international quantum hub.

French quantum computing firm PASQAL has launched a five-year, $90 million initiative within DistriQ, the quantum innovation zone located in Sherbrooke, Québec.

The project aims to conduct manufacturing and commercialization activities for quantum computers, as well as research and development in collaboration with academic and industrial partners, with an ultimate goal of promoting Sherbrooke as an international quantum hub. 

As part of its commitment, PASQAL also announced a contribution of $500,000 to the creation of a research chair within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Sherbrooke.

PASQAL said the province of Québec is providing a $15-million loan for the project, which is expected to create 53 permanent jobs over the course of the five years.

“We aim to actively participate in the creation of a dynamic ecosystem that will serve as a catalyst for innovation in the quantum industry, thus attracting talent and companies from all over the world,” PASQAL CEO Georges-Olivier Reymond said in a statement. 

The commitment follows the opening of PASQAL’s quantum processing devices factory, Quantum Space 1, at DistriQ on Friday.  

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PASQAL said a new facility within Quantum Space 1 will open in 2024 aimed at manufacturing neutral atom quantum computers. The facility will also provide a collaborative environment to be used for research and development, prototype testing, and business activities.

PASQAL was founded out of the Institut d’Optique in France in 2019 by Reymond, chief scientific officer Antoine Browaeys, chief qubits officer Thierry Lahaye, board member Christophe Jurczak, and 2022 Nobel Prize in Physics winner Alain Aspect. The company says it builds quantum computers from ordered neutral atoms in 2D and 3D arrays and has secured more than €140 million in financing to date. 

In January, the federal government unveiled a $360-million National Quantum Strategy which seeks to position Canada as a global frontrunner in quantum computing. Québec, in particular, has received attention and resources over the past year as it builds up its quantum presence. 

Before DistriQ officially launched in Sherbrooke earlier this year, Ercisson started a quantum research hub in Montréal to facilitate telecom-related quantum research that it can later commercialize. Last month, the Québec and federal government also jointly invested over $7.6 million into a quantum telecom testbed. 

Feature image courtesy University of Sherbrook/Quantum Innovation Zone via

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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