1QBit Company Backgrounder

1QBit solves industry’s most demanding challenges by recasting problems to harness the power of quantum computing.

1QBit is dedicated to building quantum and quantum-inspired software to solve the world’s most demanding computational challenges. The company’s hardware-agnostic platforms and services enable the development of applications which scale alongside advances in both classical and quantum processors. 1QBit partners with Fortune 500 clients and leading hardware providers to redefine intractable industry problems found in the areas of optimization, simulation, and machine learning. Headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, 1QBit’s interdisciplinary team of 50 comprises mathematicians, physicists, chemists, software developers, and quantum computing experts who develop novel solutions to problems, from research through to commercial application development.
1QBit was founded in 2012 by Andrew Fursman and Landon Downs, following their analysis of the impending need for tools to facilitate access to commercial quantum computation. The company is backed by a private investor base led by the CME Group and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

 

FOUNDER / TECHNICAL LEADERSHIP BIOS 
Andrew Fursman, CEO – Andrew leads the strategic vision and the development of partnerships for 1QBit. Andrew also is a founding partner at Vancouver-based VCC Minor Capital, co-founder of Satellogic Nano-Satellites, and co-founder of Cloudtel Communications. He studied Economics at the University of Waterloo and Philosophy and Political Science at the University of British Columbia prior to completing post-graduate programs in Technology Studies at Singularity University and Financial Engineering at Stanford University.
Landon Downs, President – Landon is responsible for the leadership of all internal operations and the execution of key partnerships and projects at 1QBit. Landon is also a founding partner at Agentis Capital, a boutique financial advisory firm, and Minor Capital. He has experience spanning from startups and early-stage investing to mergers and acquisitions and advising on some of the largest public- private-partnership infrastructure transactions in Canada. Throughout his career he has advised on the deployment of over $6Bn of capital. Landon received a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Victoria, is a CFA charterholder, and has completed Singularity University’s Executive Program.
Dr. Kausar Samli, Chief Operations Officer – Kausar has a unique blend of scientific expertise in cell-specific targeting, high-throughput screening, molecular evolution, protein engineering, and computational modelling. He is a co-inventor on pending patents, the recipient of a Marie Curie Fellowship, and has published and presented at international conferences. He holds a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology from the University of Georgia, a M.S. in chemistry from Arizona State University, and a B.S. in biochemistry from the University of Texas at Austin. He attended Singularity University’s Global Solutions Program. As a thought leader, internationalist, and entrepreneur, Kausar is an advisor to 1QBit in the areas of strategy, technology commercialization, leadership, and organizational development.
Dr. Phil Goddard, Head of Research – Phil is the President of Goddard Consulting. Formerly, he worked with The Mathworks as manager of the financial services practice within their North American consulting group and as a Senior Consultant and Application Engineer. He holds a PhD in Engineering from the University of Cambridge.
Dr. Michael P. Friedlander, Scientific Advisor – Michael is the IBM Professor of Computer Science and Professor of Mathematics at the University of British Columbia. Prior to this he spent two years as Professor of Mathematics at the University of California, Davis. Michael received his PhD in Operations Research from Stanford University and his BA in Physics from Cornell University. Michael was also a Wilkinson Fellow in Scientific Computing at Argonne National Laboratory, a senior fellow at UCLA’s Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics, and a long-term visitor at the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing. He currently serves as the Program Director, SIAM Activity Group in Optimization, and as associate editor of many of the major journals in continuous optimization. His research focuses primarily in developing numerical methods for constrained optimization, their software implementation, and applications in signal processing, image reconstruction, and machine learning.  
Dr. Helmut Katzgraber, Research Lead – Helmut studied physics at ETH Zurich where he graduated with a diploma with distinction under the supervision of Prof. Gianni Blatter. He received his PhD in Physics in 2001 under the supervision of Prof. A. Peter Young at the University of California, Santa Cruz for numerical studies of spin-glass systems. After a one-year postdoctoral position with Profs. Gergely Zimanyi and Richard Scalettar at the University of California, Davis, where he worked on numerical studies of magnetic recording media, he returned to ETH Zurich in 2002 as a postdoctoral fellow in Prof. Gianni Blatter’s group at the Institute for Theoretical Physics. In 2007, he was awarded a Swiss National Science Foundation professorship and, in 2009, he joined TAMU as a tenure-track assistant professor. In 2011, he received an NSF CAREER award. In 2012, he was tenured and promoted to the rank of associate professor in the Physics and Astronomy Department at TAMU and, in 2015, promoted to professor. In parallel, since 2014 he is an external faculty member at the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico and consults as a Research Lead at 1QBit. His main research in computational physics includes the investigation of disordered and complex systems, as well as the study of problems related to quantum computing.
David Roberts, Board Chair – David is an M.I.T. and Harvard alumnus and award-winning CEO. He is a former Special Agent, decorated military officer, and career officer in the Executive Branch of the US Government. David has started ventures backed with over USD$100M of investment from groups such as KPCB, Khosla, Cisco, Oracle, and In-Q-Tel, and has led the development of technical systems including satellites, unmanned air vehicles, and analytical fusion centres.
Technical Team – 1QBit’s 46 researchers and developers hold over 90 university degrees in a wide variety of specialized areas including graph theory, condensed matter physics, high-energy physics, discrete optimization, continuous optimization, computer engineering, and robust control system design.

 

 

TIMELINE
2012 – 1QBit founded by two partners of Minor Capital VCC in an office above a local pub
2013 – Founders self funded until September 2013
2013 – Received MITACS funding
2013 – Raised seed round
2013 – Machine Access Agreement signed with D-Wave
2013 – Filed first provisional patent  
2013 – Marcos López de Prado joined 1QBit as head of Scientific Advisory Board
2014 – Team reached 20 members
2014 – CME Group’s venture arm made a strategic investment and leads Series A financing
2014 – Team reached 30 members
2014 – Partnership with D-Wave Systems announced
2014 – Filed first patent
2014 – David Roberts joined 1QBit as Chairman of the Board
2014 – Blu Putnam appointed as CME’s Board Representative
2015 – First patent granted
2015 – Published collaborative research paper with NASA/USRA on job-shop scheduling
2015 – Recognized as a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer
2015 – 1QBit team scaled to 40 with world-leading experts in physics, math, and computer science
2015 – Royal Bank of Scotland strategic investment led financing round with CME Group’s venture arm
2016 – Completed proof of concept engagement with Fortune 100 retail partner 
2016 – Partnered with Canadian High Commission to the UK’s Canadian Technology Accelerator in London
2016 – Interactive notebook introduced for experimentation with quantum software development kit
2016 – Jointly launched quantumforquants.org community with D-Wave and world’s leading finance experts
2016 – Andrew Fursman named to The World Economic Forum Future of Computation Council
2016 – Completed proof of concept engagement with Fortune 100 oil and gas partner 
2016 – Hosted 1QBit Symposium on mathematical programming and quantum optimization
2016 – Invited to brief the United Nations on developments in emerging technologies, machine learning, and AI
2017 – 1QBit scaled to 50 team members, adding key hires in software development and research
2017 – Michael P. Friedlander joined as 1QBit Advisor
2017 – Helmut G. Katzgraber joined as 1QBit Research Lead
2017 – 1QBit joins NVIDIA’s inception program
2017 – Fujitsu and 1QBit announce collaboration on quantum inspired AI cloud service 
2017 – Biogen, Accenture and 1QBit publically announce development of quantum-enabled molecular comparison application  
2017 – The Dow Chemical Company and 1QBit announce multi-year collaboration agreement 

 

 

AWARDS AND RECOGNITION 
On August 5th, 2015 the World Economic Forum announced 1QBit as a recipient of the 2015 Technology Pioneer Award. This honour recognizes 1QBit as a leader among the world’s most promising technology companies alongside past winners such as Google, Dropbox, Palantir, Twitter, and Kickstarter. The 2015 cohort is composed of a select few contemporary deep science start-up companies including 1QBit, Ayasdi, and Vicarious. The World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers programme recognizes early-stage companies from around the world that are involved in the design, development, and deployment of new technologies, and are poised to have a significant impact on business and society.
1QBit has been invited to participate in multiple WEF events, alongside high-influence industry and government leaders, including the Annual General Meeting in Davos, where 1QBit spoke as a panelist on the topic of accelerating scientific breakthroughs and the future of innovation in Canada alongside Prime Minister Trudeau.
1QBit has also given presentations at the UN as part of their partnership and advisory in the development of the new UNICRI Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics. In September 2016, 1QBit spoke at a UN high-level side event on emerging technologies and their implications for global security and in February 2017 at a workshop on AI and robotics organized by the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute.
Frequently invited to present research at specialized conferences attended by experts from industries served by 1QBit’s software projects, 1QBit has enjoyed many headline and informal presentations at global conferences and private events. Select speaking engagements include: Founders Forum, BlueYard Capital x Google Labs: Quantum Leap, JPMorgan’s Global Equities Quantitative Conference in London, Wired for Wonder in Sydney, the APS annual meeting, Exponential Finance in NYC, and Impact Canada.

 

NOTABLE PRESS
1QBit Seeks to Fill Quantum Computing’s Software Void – The Wall Street Journal   
Quantum Computing Might be Here Sooner Than You Think Bloomberg Markets
Quantum Computing May Speed Drug Discovery, Biogen Test Suggests – The Wall Street Journal   
Here, there and everywhere: Quantum technology is beginning to come into its own The Economist 
Quantum computing power leap – CBC The National 
Quantum leaps for new computer approach – Defence Systems 
D-Wave and 1QBit launch Quantum for Quants at Global Derivatives – Cantech Letter
Quantum computing – welcome to the future – Global Derivatives
Foreign investment for Canadian high-tech in Davos – The National Press
Quantum computing and wall street – Bloomberg
CME Group on investing in tech startups – Chicago Tribune
Bright future for quantum computing thanks to 1QBit – BetaKit
Vancouver-based 1QBit looks to become the next software giant BC Business 

 

PRESS CONTACT
Amanda Downs, Director of Communications 
amanda.downs@1qbit.com
+1 (778) 987–8191