2021 Qilimanjaro Year in Review

2021 has been the year of building up Qilimanjaro, completing our development lab and building up our core development team, with new employees coming from many different international locations.

In many ways, 2021 has really been a stellar year – despite Covid-19 challenges for travel, logistics and supply chains. If 2019 was when the startup was founded and 2020 when it began operations, 2021 has been the first year of results, with revenues topping 1M€ of customer revenue, making them quantum ready.

First and foremost, we have commissioned our first gate-based superconducting qubit quantum computer to our client and partner TII in the UAE. This effort runs in parallel with designing our innovative, upcoming coherent quantum annealing architecture with superconducting flux qubits, that we expect to launch during 2023. Along these lines, our co-founder Pol Forn-Díaz has successfully driven the first year of the European Commission’s coherent annealing program, and for which Qilimanjaro is a key partner.

In addition, Qilimanjaro continues to contribute to Qibo, the fully open source quantum access and control stack, that is currently under development by teams in Barcelona, Milano, Abu Dhabi and Singapore across a number of qubit technologies, at the moment, superconducting and trapped ions. At the same time, Qilimanjaro’s theory team has been busy preparing initial patents and publications related to adiabatic computing.  Qilimanjaro staff published its roadmap for innovation at the European Physics Journal in 2021, both in English and with a Chinese language intro. Another comprehensive review of this roadmap has been published this year in Japanese by the Yano Research Institute; Japan is the source of adiabatic computing, and Qilimanjaro is the European champion in this space.

In summer 2021, Qilimanjaro hosted its first batch of experimental and theory interns, and this has proven to be a very productive exercise. It’s great to have them interact with internal Industrial PhD candidates and with senior staff, so as to contribute to Qilimanjaro’s development efforts. Qilimanjaro will certainly continue and further develop these training experiences. Along these lines, Qilimanjaro founders contribute as teachers and mentors to the new Barcelona based quantum computing MSc and postgrad trainings, a great source of very necessary talent for the future.

These efforts have contributed to Qilimanjaro being granted competitive grants from the Ministry of Innovation and Science in Spain (Misiones, Neotec, Torres Quevedo, Doctorando Industrial) and from the Generalitat de Catalunya (AGAUR). Misiones CUCO is an NGE funded three-year project with Repsol, BBVA, GMV and other partners to accelerate the use of quantum computing by major corporations.

It has also contributed to the successful accomplishment of the first of two phases in other highly competitive exercises, both at the European Innovation Council “Accelerator” financing program, and at the Creative Destruction Lab acceleration program for quantum startups in Toronto. Both are considered as the respective gold standards for European grants and for international quantum accelerators.

As regards harnessing our business planning acumen, Qilimanjaro has been an active member of IESE’s business school “Technology Transfer Group” within the MBA 2021 program.

To strengthen its strategic directions, Qilimanjaro has established an Advisory Team in 2021, with leading experts in the areas of quantum superconducting hardware (R. Barends, Jülich and ex-Google), quantum software (S. Carrazza, Uni Milano and CERN) and HPC business (F. Gallo, ex-Lenovo, IBM, Atos-Bull and SGI-Cray).

Qilimanjaro has also become an active member of quantum industry consortia, such as QuIC, the brand-new European consortium for quantum companies, and of AMETIC’s Quantum Technologies group, Spain’s main IT industry consortium. It’s about developing the market conditions for quantum to flourish.

Qilimanjaro founders and staff have been very active this year in presenting their work at several conferences and events in 2021, many of them virtual, such as “Quantum Business Europe 2021” (France), “ICE 2021” (Madrid), “Dubai Future Foundation 2021” (Dubai), ”Quantum Latino 2021” (London), “AQC 2021” (Japan), “Supercomputing Asia 2021” (Singapore), “4YFN-Mobile World Congress 2021” (Barcelona), “Quantum Computing Summit 2021” (London), “BNEW 2021” (Barcelona), “BIST Quantum Conference 2021” (Barcelona), “Quantum 2021” (Bilbao), “Women-in-Quantum-Development” (Delft), “CINECA HPC and Quantum Computing 2021” (Bologna), and “Quantum Delft Seminar #10” (Delft)“.

Qilimanjaro has been featured in the Gartner Group October 2021 “IT Symposium/Xpo” as a quantum computing supplier, as has been the case in a number of other publications and conferences, such as in O. Ezratty’s new 2021 “Understanding Quantum Computing” comprehensive publication.

Finally, it is with great satisfaction that we were awarded, late in 2021, both the distinction of the top “Exponential Leader 2021” by Acció, the agency of competitiveness of the Generalitat de Catalunya, and as the best spinoff of the University of Barcelona via the “Senén Vilaró 2021” award of its Board of Trustees.

So, we are now ready to tackle 2022 – with many new ideas on how to develop our technology and serve our quantum customers.

We wish you all a Safe, Happy and Successful Quantum 2022!

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