New VC Fund Quantum Wave Focusing on Quantum Physics
Quantum physics, the focus of the 2012 Nobel Prize for Physics, may be ready for a commercial close-up. The newly formed Quantum Wave Fund, based in Boston, announced today that it has raised $30 million in capital, with plans to reach $100 million dollars, to fund early stage companies that are developing products and services based on quantum technologies.
Quantum Wave says it is the first venture fund to specialize in quantum physics, which deals with the behavior of sub-atomic particles. The fund was started by several Russian scientists, including managing partner Serguei Kouzmine, who holds a PhD in physics and has 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur; venture partner Serguei Beloussov, the founder of Parallels, Acronis, and Acumatica, and a senior partner at Moscow-based venture fund Runa Capital; and scientific advisory board member Vladimir Shalaev, scientific director of nanophotonics at Purdue University.
Quantum physics has a long and distinguished history, but recent advances in areas like quantum computing have had relatively few practical applications to date. Many scientists are convinced, however, that if the power of subatomic particles can be harnessed, computers thousands of times faster than the fastest supercomputer today could be developed. This year’s Nobel physics prize was awarded to Serge Haroche of France and David Wineland of the University of Colorado at Boulder for bringing that dream a step closer to reality with their discovery of a way to directly observe quantum particles without destroying them.
At Runa, Beloussov was part of the team that established the Russian Quantum Center in Moscow last year, along with scientists from Harvard and MIT. Beloussov said in the press release announcing Quantum Wave that while establishing the Russian Quantum Center, the team visited universities that perform research in quantum technologies. “We realized that there are many teams that develop and sell unique devices. But their common problem was the lack of scale—these devices were built by scientists who do not know how to scale up their developments into multimillion technology businesses. The mission of [Quantum Wave] is to finance such teams.”