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What Europe needs to survive the quantum wars

What Europe needs to survive the quantum wars

  • More than 43% of quantum-technology innovations patented between 2012 and 2017 came from Chinese companies and universities with the rest mostly from the US.
  • Atomico’s State of European Tech report for 2019 found that 58% of quantum venture capital funding went to European startups last year, compared to 32% to US and Canadian startups and 5% for companies in Asia.

What’s ultimately at stake is the potential for a dramatic leap forward: quantum computing could mean quickly completing tasks that would take thousands of years for an ordinary computer. The European Union has plans for €1bn of investment in quantum technologies over the next 10 years, far from the $10bn that has been announced by China.

But don’t count Europe out just yet. What the region lacks in mega-funding it can make up for with a secret weapon: superbrains. Charles Beigbeder, a French investor with his investment company Audacia and its fund Quantonation, is putting €20m behind the idea that Europe’s scientific expertise can translate into successful European companies. “Europe has a good set of cards to play because it’s had a very strong track record of fundamental research, including in physics and maths,'' he says.

The argument about European brains being the region’s golden ticket isn’t new. The region does have a history of Nobel prize winning academics and top-ranked science universities.  “The key will be our ability as a region to build on the cooperation between the scientific and industrial worlds,” Beigbeder says.

Read the full article at Sifted.