Quantum computing software startup Classiq Technologies Ltd. announced today that it has extended its Series B funding round to $49 million with a new investment from Canadian-Israeli venture capital firm Awz Ventures.
The company previously announced that it had raised $36 million in its Series B from investors including HSBC, NTT Finance and Intesa Sanpaolo. The additional $13 million added by Awz Ventures today brings its total amount raised to $64 million. Classiq said this made it one of the best-funded quantum software startups in the world.
Classiq has created a unique platform that makes it easier for developers to create quantum algorithms and applications. The company says it can help create extremely complex, optimized, and hardware-compatible quantum circuits and algorithms that developers would struggle to create on their own. Users can then analyze, optimize and maintain the quantum algorithms and circuits they create, in order to perfect them for a range of workloads, including quantum optimization, machine learning, finance, chemistry and more Again.
Besides building quantum software, a second area of focus for Classiq is scaling the global talent pool in the industry. Earlier this year, the startup launched its Classiq coding competition, offering rewards to developers who can create the most efficient quantum circuits using its tools.
Classiq’s latest round may not be huge, but it illustrates investors’ willingness to continue to make early bets on what many believe will become transformative technology across many industries. The company said its platform has already garnered a lot of interest from customers in the financial, automotive and pharmaceutical industries.
According to Classiq, many companies have realized that quantum computing hardware is advancing rapidly and the path to commercial value is now shorter than expected. At the same time, these companies are aware that there are only a limited number of developers in the world who have the skills to program quantum computers and derive results from them.
Co-founder and chief executive Nir Minerbi said he expects investments in quantum computing to start paying off in just one or two years.
“Quantum computing can generate significant value for the global economy because it can be a game-changing differentiator: from lunar projects like curing cancer to everyday problems like optimizing shipping routes and balancing personal stock portfolios,” he said. “Investing in quantum today is like investing in the internet in the 1980s. Getting started with quantum today is inexpensive, and the cost of not being quantum ready is potentially enormous. Companies and countries that don’t invest in quantum will be left behind.
Constellation Research Inc. analyst Holger Mueller said Classiq’s tour is further proof that quantum computing is rapidly evolving, in terms of hardware, platforms and software. As a result, he said, a race is building among startups hoping to provide developers with tools they are somewhat familiar with in order to help them create quantum solutions.
“Developers need a productive, high-level coding platform that strips away the hardware it runs on, so they can easily deploy code artifacts,” Mueller said. “Developer velocity will quickly become a very important factor for quantum platforms, so vendors like Classiq are well positioned to be early pioneers in this new era of computing.”
To accelerate this goal, Classiq plans to grow its research and development team from 50 people to more than 100 by the end of next year. It will also open new local offices in Europe and Japan, which are two of the countries where it sees business interest. Already this year, Classiq has forged notable partnerships with Amazon Web Services Inc. and Nvidia Corp. that focus on quantum experimentation and accelerating the path to quantum advantage.
“Classiq’s vision is impressive, coupled with a clear business plan that harnesses the commercial potential of quantum computing today,” said Yaron Ashkenazi, Founder and Managing Partner of Awz Ventures.