Investing in Photonic: Unlocking a Credible Path to Commercial Quantum Computing

Culminating several years of work to bring a uniquely qualified team of executives and investors behind what we believe is the world’s strongest quantum research and collaboration with an ideal go-to-market partner, Microsoft, Vancouver-based portfolio company Photonic today introduced its quantum architecture and the financing necessary to bring it to market.

Photonic’s ambition, global mindset, and immense potential impact on humanity are reminiscent of another Inovia portfolio company, Cohere – both emerging Canadian companies at the top of their field.

Photonic is building a useful quantum computer – probably the world’s first – thanks to its scalable, distributed, and fault-tolerant architecture. This enables breakthroughs in drug discovery, AI, chemistry and materials and other fields that otherwise can’t be achieved with conventional supercomputers. What an amazing time that we can now see the potential for quantum computing that solves valuable real-world problems rather than always being “ten years away.” The impact of the team’s work is immense, finally unlocking a credible path to commercial quantum computing. 

Photonic’s unique architecture uses photonically-linked silicon spin qubits, which support a universal gate set and entanglement between spin qubits on a chip or between chips using telecom-band photons—a key enabler of quantum networking.

Our introduction to Photonic arose naturally from the multiple touchpoints of our network. We followed Paul Terry, the Chief Executive Officer at Photonic, as he built and exited large-scale technology companies. When he joined Photonic in 2019, we paid attention! Through those early interactions, we were also introduced to Dr. Stephanie Simmons, Photonic Co-founder and Chief Quantum Officer and a world-leading quantum scientist. The technical competence and vision of the team were (and continue to remain) very impressive. When we learned that Inovia LPs and co-investors Don Mattrick and Nanon De Gaspé Beaubien-Mattrick were also backing the company, that convinced us that Photonic was the top-performing team in building commercially viable quantum computing. 

Over the years, our team has supported Photonic’s company-building efforts, including recruitment support for critical, hard-to-source talent and tools and resources for their employee programs.

Today’s announcement of the US$100M financing round, along with a strategic collaboration with Microsoft, is a testimony to the company’s strong scientific foundation poised to unlock the next stages of development in quantum networking and power the global quantum ecosystem with future capabilities.

We are proud to celebrate Photonic’s milestones achieved to date. We look forward to being part of the company’s journey as it navigates commercialization and propels Canadian leadership in quantum computing to the global stage.