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Linking Academia and Business, 1QBit Wins the Mitacs Award for Exceptional Leadership — Industry

1QBit was named the recipient of the Mitacs Award for Exceptional Leadership—Industry. Awarded to organizations that are pioneers in research and innovation in Canada, it reflects 1QBit’s commitment to being a leader in solving the most-challenging industry problems with forward-thinking, advanced computing technology. The award also validates 1QBit’s having deep roots in developing research interns into industry professionals. 

“1QBit isn’t just building a successful business. It’s part of a national effort to build a new anchor industry of advanced computing in Canada.”

In addition to the industry leadership award, two of 1QBit’s own Mitacs interns were nominated for their outstanding research. Anish Verma was nominated for the Mitacs Award for Outstanding Innovation—Master’s, in recognition of his significant achievement in nuclear physics research using quantum computing techniques with a view to applying his methodology to financial systems. Kyle Mills, now a full-time employee at 1QBit, was nominated for the Mitacs Award for Outstanding Innovation—PhD for his work on using reinforcement learning to study quantum systems. 

Mitacs is a Canadian not-for-profit organization that facilitates research and development by connecting the best post-secondary institutions to industry in order to drive the collaboration between academia and business. Mitacs has enabled many internships for researchers from over 100 post-secondary institutions domestically and even more internationally. Mitacs CEO & Scientific Director John Hepburn says, “Mitacs is extremely proud to have been part of 1QBit’s success by partnering with the company to source top talent. Through our collaboration, we drive Canadian innovation.”

The foundation of 1QBit was built with the help of Mitacs. Discussing the early days of the company, 1QBit CEO Andrew Fursman says, “When my co-founder and I put the first dollars into 1QBit’s brand new, empty bank account, we knew we were making an investment in our future and we cut our first corporate cheque to Mitacs.” Over the years, he has developed an inspiring outlook. “1QBit isn’t just building a successful business,” continued Fursman. “It’s part of a national effort to build a new anchor industry of advanced computing in Canada.”


1QBit Co-founder and CEO Andrew Fursman


Mitacs and 1QBit share a vision that links industry and academia. Mitacs facilitates industry opportunities for up-and-coming researchers, and 1QBit allows the interns to grow and flourish into dynamic researchers that build innovative solutions to real-world problems. Looking back on the partnership that has developed since 2013, Andrew Fursman says, “Of the 130 people who have since joined 1QBit, just under half have been directly related to Mitacs. Looking to the future, we have over 100 more Mitacs internships already planned.”

Canada is becoming a world leader in AI, advanced information processing, and real-world quantum computing. Although quantum technology is in its early stages, this is just the beginning. With offices in Vancouver, Waterloo, and Sherbrooke, as well as strong partnerships in Alberta and Saskatchewan, 1QBit spans across the country as a key player in these fields at the national level. Exceptional people are at the forefront of advanced computing and, together with Mitacs, are educating the next generation of leaders. 

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