We chatted to the team at Quantum Mads, a quantum computing start-up aimed squarely at the finance sector. The growing team is proving commercial focused finance services using the latest quantum computing developers. Introducing….Quantum mads!
QZ: Please tell us your genesis story How you began and why? Tell us a little about the team and their background.
Quantum Mads roots began in the Bilbao Quantum Computing Hackathon organized by InnoLab. We were allowed to present a private challenge to the participants with my previous and still active company ZM Algorithmic Systems. Luckily, the team and I as a mentor placed first in the Deep Quantum category.
After that successful event, we continued talking about the possibility of starting a project as a spin-off from ZM Algorithmic Systems to continue the development of the solution and we finally decided to launch Quantum Mads considering the outstanding team we could create mixing the different expertise areas.
The final team is engineered towards gathering all the core parts of the business project. On one hand, we have the know-how on the quantitative finance industry from the ZM Algorithmic Systems team. On the other hand, the QUTIS group members of the team add all the crucial knowledge about quantum technologies and even some experience with resounding financial applications of quantum computing created on behalf of the group led by Prof. Enrique Solano. Finally, the CTO role is also present for converting all this expertise into real applications by an experienced senior software engineer.
QZ: Many of the team are quantum grad students. Is this company going to be home for you when you finish your studies?
This is not exactly true. All of the team has concluded their graduate studies and after doing their MSc’s, they are mainly pursuing PhDs, beyond those of us who are not on the academic side.
For sure, Quantum Mads has the aim of serving as a placeholder for everyone in the team as we want to create real practical applications of quantum finance far beyond academic research so that we can certainly profit from them.
QZ: What are you working on and with who?
Actually, we have four parallelized projects and their description can be found on our website. We are creating the white papers for each of them and anyone can sign up to receive the latest updates just by giving their email.
In terms of the actual situation of the projects, Q-mads is actually funded by us, Q-retail is funded by a retail bank here in Spain, Q-allocate is funded by an international proprietary trading group and finally, we are starting the conversations for q-crypto funding. All of them are going to be built as frameworks and will be available for clients in their respective tier (B2C and B2B).
QZ: Give everyone a single human-readable sentence/paragraph to describe your company?
We are the first company that is leveraging the power of quantum computing by doing Quantum Financial Modeling as a Service (QFMaaS) for real productive applications.
QZ: What is your mission?
Quantum Mads aims to dissect both theoretically and practically the intrinsic dynamics of complex financial systems, creating solutions that will disrupt the current state of the art modeling techniques and allowing to have unique insights to add disruptive value to the client’s solutions.
QZ: Do you have clients?
Yes we have, but we cannot actually disclose more specifics.
QZ: Are you making any money yet from paying customers?
Yes, three of the actual QFMaaS projects are funded by different clients.
QZ: Who is supporting you?
We are supported by: ZM Algorithmic Systems, IQM Quantum Computers, InnoLab and the QUTIS Center of the University of the Basque Country.
QZ: What do you need? Or are looking for? (i.e. funding, growing team, clients…)
We are actually very focused on the developments of the QFMaaS products of our clients.
Actually, we are looking for more funding for our Q-crypto project and we are open to consider other projects or funding proposals to grow our team and portfolio.
QZ: Where did the name come from? What does it mean?
The name means literally what is says: we are mad about quantum! It resonates totally with our thoughts on the possibilities that quantum technologies can create to disrupt many industries and paradigms in the actual and near future.
QZ: What aspect of Quantum has surprised you the most?
The ability to generate new paradigms around quantitative finance. Now we are much more advanced in the path of dissecting the complex and dynamic financial markets so that all the world can directly benefit from this findings.
Even more, we are super excited and interested in the health industry applications of quantum computing and we will soon be working towards launching real projects also on that area.
QZ: What is the most challenging part about working in the Quantum Computing domain?
The most challenging part is being able to not forget about the business problems we need to solve with quantum computing. Everyone is super excited about any of the quantum advantages that quantum computing can provide; however, we need to keep a very focused eye on what is the problem we need to solve and how we are solving it to really deliver unique value for the clients.
This is a crucial point: we will generate value for the client if we fit the technology to the business problem, not the other way around.
In Quantum Mads we are totally aware of this due to our expertise in the quantitative finance domain and that is something that forms one of our core advantages.
QZ: When do you see Quantum Computing as getting mass traction and mainstream appeal?
In my opinion, that is starting to happen as quantum hardware is being offered in the cloud just as other common cloud services. Furthermore, the creation of more accessible and affordable quantum computers (for example by IQM Quantum Computers) will make this reality happen much sooner that we think.
QZ: How can people learn and get into Quantum Computing?
There are many sources out there in which you can gain knowledge in quantum technologies.
Depending on your preferences you can pursue university degrees, masters or even take courses from leading industry companies like IBM.
My advice for newcomers is that they should start working directly on practical applications with the available coding platforms and resources. This way they will get a real grasp of what can me accomplished with quantum computing and how it can be translated to solve business problems.
QZ: What career advice can you give about getting into the QC space.
This is certainly the easiest question of the whole interview: if you are not in the quantum computing space, you are living in the past and not being part of the future.