Cambridge Quantum and Honeywell Quantum Solutions Fuse to Lead Quantum Computing Industry

The yet unnamed new company is expected to help advance industry growth.

(Image source: Honeywell Quantum Solutions.)

(Image source: Honeywell Quantum Solutions.)

Cambridge Quantum Computing (CQ) and Honeywell Quantum Solutions (HQS) have agreed to combine to create a new company that will drive progress on what could become a $1 trillion quantum computing industry.

Both companies are leaders in the quantum computing industry in their own right. Cambridge Quantum has developed quantum computing products for use in various sectors such as chemistry, finance, pharmaceuticals, materials science, optimization, natural language processing and cybersecurity. Its t|ket⟩ quantum software development platform is an architecture agnostic quantum software stack that translates machine-independent algorithms into executable circuits, optimizing physical qubit layout and reducing the number of required operations.

Honeywell, which has invested in and partnered with Cambridge Quantum since 2019, recently announced that its trapped ion-based quantum computing hardware achieved a quantum volume of 512, reportedly the highest measured on a commercial quantum computer to date.

The union of Cambridge Quantum and Honeywell Quantum Solutions will result in a new company that has yet to be named but which is expected to be ready for business in the third quarter of 2021.

“Joining together into an exciting newly combined enterprise, HQS and CQ will become a global powerhouse that will create and commercialize quantum solutions that address some of humanity’s greatest challenges while driving the development of what will become a $1 trillion industry,” said Ilyas Khan, CEO and founder of Cambridge Quantum.

Honeywell will invest between $270 million and $300 million and will own a majority stake in the new company, while Cambridge Quantum will own a more than 45 percent share. In addition, the deal includes a long-term agreement to assist Honeywell in manufacturing critical ion traps necessary for powering quantum hardware.

Founded in 2014 and based in the UK, Cambridge Quantum reportedly has the largest scientific team devoted to quantum algorithms and software. It will continue to operate unchanged once the new company is established.

Honeywell Chairman and CEO Darius Adamczyk will serve as chairman of the new company that will be led by Khan. Tony Uttley, currently the president of Honeywell Quantum, will serve as the new company’s president.

“The new company will have the best talent in the industry, the world’s highest-performing quantum computer, the first and most advanced quantum operating system, and comprehensive, hardware-agnostic software that will drive the future of the quantum computing industry,” said Adamczyk. “The new company will be extremely well-positioned to create value in the near-term within the quantum computing industry by offering the critical global infrastructure needed to support the sector’s explosive growth.”

According to a report from Research Dive, the global quantum computing industry is expected to experience market growth between 2020 and 2027, rising to a market size of over $667.3 million by the end of that time frame. That’s up from $88.2 million in 2019, with an expected growth rate of 30 percent between 2020 and 2027.

The report cited two main drivers of the industry’s growth: the COVID-19 pandemic and the rise in cybersecurity breaches.

Quantum computing was a crucial tool in drug discovery during the pandemic, and quantum chemistry can produce vital calculations and optimization for several industries such as pharmaceuticals, specialty chemicals, performance materials and agrochemicals.

A rise in cyberattacks means that companies are spending more on cybersecurity and that continually advancing technologies are needed. For example, Cambridge Quantum has demonstrated that verifiable quantum randomness can be generated from a quantum processor. This randomness is an essential component of nondeterministic keys that are deemed unhackable. The company’s IronBridge product is an encryption process that ensures device independence and source certifiability for use in post-quantum encryption algorithms, cached entropy generation for Internet of Things (IoT) devices, key generation for certificates, quantum watermarking and other uses.

Cambridge Quantum was one of 10 companies listed as key industry players in the report.

Despite its projected positive growth, the relative obscurity of quantum computing coupled with a lack of skilled workers in the field is expected to reign in the growth potential.