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SK Telecom Buys Stake In ID Quantique

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Korea's SK Telecom has announced that the company has invested (USD) $65 million towards development of quantum safe cryptography and sensing solutions by ID Quantique. The announcement was made in March to support further development of "˜hack-proof' mobile technologies.

"The strategic investment plan will strengthen ID Quantique's position in this field and support development of IDQ's quantum technologies for the telecom and IoT markets," remarked SK Telecom's Park Jung-Ho at a signing ceremony. "In the 5G era where everything in the real world is connected wirelessly, the issue of safety will continue to rise," added Park. "We will continue our utmost efforts to provide our customers with the world's safest 5G technology."

Quantum cryptography has emerged as an essential solution for safeguarding critical digital information, according to the two companies. The IDQ technology encrypts transmitted data using special quantum keys, which, according to the laws of quantum physics, are impossible to intercept or steal, they noted.

According to San Francisco-based Market Research Media, the global quantum cryptography communications market will grow into a $ 24.75 billion industry by 2025. Macro trends such as 5G and IoT are set to be drivers for IDQ's quantum-safe and quantum sensing solutions, the companies believe.

SK Telecom has had a long-term relationship with IDQ: in 2016 SK invested (USD) $2 million in IDQ and in 2017 the company developed the world's smallest (5x5mm) Quantum Random Number Generator based on technology and know-how licensed from IDQ.

ID Quantique and SK Telecom stated that they will, in parallel, collaborate in the field of quantum sensing in order to keep growing the company's core quantum photonics technologies and provide the most innovative solutions for high potential industrial markets.

"Quantum communications technologies will play a significant role in securing our data and communications, both in backbone networks and at the edge, in an era where the quantum computer will render vulnerable much of today's cryptography," added Dr. Grégoire Ribordy, CEO and co-Founder of IDQ. "We are proud to work closely with SK Telecom. Partnering with them will allow us to accelerate development of leading-edge solutions to meet these market needs. Together we can enter new geographic and vertical markets and meet the increasing demands for security."

ID Quantique to open a Bristol office

Since its 2001 founding in Geneva, Switzerland, IDQ said it has been an innovator in quantum technology with a focus on quantum-safe security solutions, single-photon systems and quantum random number generators. The company has grown quickly in the past three years, it stated. Sales revenue has tripled, the workforce has doubled, and IDQ created a joint venture in China. The company said it expects growth will continue, and that it has plans to open an office in Bristol (UK).

IQD said that it chose Bristol for its UK expansion because the area is home to over 35,000 digital jobs and has a blend of seasoned businesses and innovative startups. Bristol has been a focal point for the technology industry for many years and it is also home to the University of Bristol, an organisation that IDQ has worked closely with in its development of LiDAR.

The company stated that its Bristol location will facilitate continued work with the UK Quantum Communications Hub partnership, focusing on the development of quantum technologies for real world applications.


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