Delft-based Quantum Delta NL (QDNL), a public-private foundation for excellence in quantum innovation, announced on Tuesday that it has raised €60.2M in funding from The National Growth Fund (NGF) as the Dutch contribution to the trilateral agreement with France and Germany.
The joint programme’s goal is to improve cross-border strategic R&D links in order to accelerate the growth of the European Quantum Technologies Industry.
The trilateral agreement
France, Germany, and the Netherlands are leading member states in terms of their respective R&D and startup ecosystems, and the maturity of their national quantum projects.
They aim to advance the European innovation system through collaborative efforts based on complementary excellence by utilising synergies.
In November 2022, officials of the respective governments already signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the intention to collaborate. The Dutch are funding the implementation with this investment.
In order to support the plan, France and Germany have pledged their own finances for a joint R&D call and the creation of shared facilities in the style of a “European Quantum Campus”, while also utilising funding from their own state programmes.
The total budget for this proposal is €206.3M. Of this amount, €60.2M is requested from the NGF. The rest is contributed by France, Germany and possibly other European countries.
Prior to the launch of this new initiative, Quantum Delta NL hosted a Deep Tech discussion on April 12, 2023, during King Willem-Alexander and President Macron’s most recent state visit.
On that occasion, the CEOs of Dutch and French companies involved in photonics, semiconductors, and quantum technologies concurred that cooperation between the three nations was urgently required.
Priorities include increasing capital expenditures in Europe, developing a robust internal market for quantum, and developing resilient supply networks for the geopolitical environment of today.
Quantum Delta NL says that the €60.2M funding will be allocated in two modules:.
First, it will be used to create specialised centres of excellence with shared facilities and resources that businesses, researchers, and startups can utilise to work together on initiatives within their respective fields of expertise.
Second, the money will be used to expedite cooperative technological programmes for a select group of international multidisciplinary quantum initiatives, together with equity investments for businesses engaged in the development of quantum computing, sensing, and communication technologies.
To choose the top projects, the three nations will release a combined request for bids.
However, there are a few requirements that must be met before this extra international initiative can begin, including strong financial commitments from the other Member States and efficient international and national governance.
In order to get ready for the final execution phase, Quantum Delta NL will undertake a midterm evaluation of its initial 2021–2028 programme. The NGF committee will then evaluate this proposal without reference to this worldwide plan.
Accelerating quantum technology developments
Quantum Delta NL is a public-private partnership of global tech companies, government agencies, and all major quantum research centres in the Netherlands.
The firm is kicking off three ambitious catalyst programmes designed to accelerate the process of introducing quantum technology to the market and to society.
Its aim is to provide easy access to quantum networks, computers and simulators, lowering the threshold for development and testing.
The programmes have a cohesive function, bringing together the various technologies and action lines, various ecosystem actors, and the scientific and user communities.