Startup Funding: November 2023

Big month for quantum computing; 59 companies raise $1.7 billion.


November was a banner month for quantum computing startups, with two raising rounds of $100 million for their superconducting and silicon spin qubit technology. Another significant round went to a company developing photonic-based systems. Several other companies drew funding, including one applying quantum sensors to semiconductor inspection.

Sizeable funding also went to an autonomous transit startup and several battery companies. Other notable investments involved companies developing sub-threshold power management, nanomaterials in transistors, and startups backed by NATO’s new accelerator. This report covers 59 companies that collectively raised $1.7 billion last month.


VSORA was awarded $13.2M in grant and equity funding from the European Innovation Council Accelerator. VSORA develops silicon IP and chips for AI. A major focus for the company is ADAS and autonomous driving at L3 through L5. The startup says its multicore digital signal processor (DSP) and deep learning accelerator architecture eliminates the need for additional DSP co-processors and AI hardware accelerators, while providing a software level of flexibility. In addition to support for CNN and RNN, its Tyr chip family is also capable of handling newer types of algorithms, such as transformers, BEVformer, and federated learning. Earlier this year, VSORA introduced a chiplet-based scalable accelerator solution for generative AI inference with an architecture it claims enables data to be fed to the processing units 100% of the time regardless of the number of compute elements. It is also targeting signal processing for digital communications systems. Founded in 2015, it is based in Meudon-La-Forêt, France.

Spherical Systems drew €1.0M (~$1.1M) in pre-seed investment and grants led by UNIIQ, joined by Graduate Entrepreneur Fund, Rabobank, and angel investors. Spherical Systems develops space-grade chips for electronic subsystems in satellites. Funds will be used to product the first iterations of its chips and develop the first systems. Founded in 2022, it is based in Noordwijk, the Netherlands.

Manufacturing & equipment

SMT Intelligence received a CAD 68.0M (~$49.7M) investment from Fonds de solidarité FTQ. SMT provides PCBA, electronic, and electromechanical circuit manufacturing from prototyping to mass production. It manufactures standard PCBs alongside various other types including flexible, ceramic, and aluminum. Founded in 2001, it is based in Laval, Québec, Canada.

Test, measurement & inspection

QuantumDiamonds raised €7.0M (~$7.7M) in seed and grant funding from IQ Capital, Earlybird Venture Capital, Onsight Ventures, First Momentum, Creator Fund, UnternehmerTUM, and the European Innovation Council Accelerator. QuantumDiamonds makes quantum sensors based on nitrogen-vacancy (NV) centers in diamonds. The sensors can be used for magnetic field sensing, magnetic field imaging, and temperature sensing. The company says a quantum diamond microscope made with its technology can be used to identify defects such as current leakages by detecting the small vector magnetic field generated by current through an IC or PCB with a high spatial resolution. The technology also has applications in battery development, chemical analysis, and medical diagnostics. Funds will be used to launch its first commercial product and hire. Founded in 2022, it is based in Munich, Germany.


Niron Magnetics drew $33.0M in financing from GM Ventures and Stellantis Ventures, previous investors Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and the University of Minnesota, and others. Niron Magnetics makes high-performance permanent magnets based on iron nitride and free of rare earths. High-performance magnets have applications in hard drives as well as EV drive trains, consumer appliances, audio speakers, and industrial and commercial spaces such as wind turbines, elevators, and HVAC. Niron claims its magnets are less expensive and have inherently higher magnetization than rare earth alternatives. Funds will be used to expand its current pilot production facilities and scale manufacturing capacity. Founded in 2015 as a spin off from the University of Minnesota, it is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

Chiral Nano received a CHF 0.2M (~$0.2M) award from the Venture Kick accelerator. Chiral Nano is developing nanomaterial-based transistors with a bridging carbon nanotube. It is working on a scalable manufacturing process to grow, select, and automatically integrate nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes or graphene into transistors at high speed, high quality, and with full process control. It says its nanotransistor technology is suitable for quantum processors and sensors. Founded in 2022 as a spin out from ETH and Empa, it is based in Zurich, Switzerland.

Power devices

Nanopower Semiconductor was awarded €7.5M (~$8.0M) in grant and equity funding from the European Innovation Council Accelerator. Nanopower Semiconductor has developed a subthreshold power management IC for a battery-constrained system’s wireless chip, processor, and sensors. It says the architecture enables devices to operate without an active microcontroller in the nanoampere-range during periods without wireless communication while keeping monitoring and other functions intact. Founded in 2017, it is based in Kristiansand, Norway.

Quantum computing

Oxford Quantum Circuits (OQC) announced a $100.0M Series B round led by SBI Investment, joined by Oxford Science Enterprises, University of Tokyo Edge Capital Partners, Lansdowne Partners, and Oxford Investment Consultants. OQC develops quantum computers based on superconducting qubits implemented within a coaxmon architecture. The three-dimensional architecture brings key components off-chip, which the company says increases simplicity, flexibility, and scalability. OQC also debuted its upgradeable 32-qubit platform that can be deployed in commercial data centers. Based in Shinfield, UK, it was founded in 2017.

Photonic raised $100.0M in funding from British Columbia Investment Management Corporation, Microsoft, the UK government’s National Security Strategic Investment Fund, Inovia Capital, and Amadeus Capital Partners. Photonic is developing distributed quantum computing and networking platforms based on photonically linked silicon spin qubits, an approach it says is scalable and fault tolerant. Photonic links in silicon deliver quantum entanglement not only between qubits on the same chip but also among multiple quantum chips. The highly connected qubit architecture also enables use of efficient quantum error correction codes. By using a qubit with a photon interface, the architecture can communicate using ultralow-loss telecommunications band fibers to support quantum key distribution (QKD), post-quantum cryptography (PQC), blind computing, and quantum repeaters. Photonic will also collaborate with Microsoft on quantum communications over long distances. Founded in 2016, it is based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and has raised $140M to date.

Quandela drew over €50.0M (~$53.4M) in funding from Serena Capital, Credit Mutuel Innovation, the European Innovation Council Fund, and existing investors Bpifrance, OMNES Capital, and Quantonation. Quandela develops photonic quantum computers that are available both on cloud and on-premises. The company uses quantum light sources to deliver high quality photons to specially designed quantum processing units in the form of parametrizable chips. Opto-electronics modules facilitate the interconnection of solid-state photon sources with integrated photonic chip processors, or with fiber-based loops in the case of quantum computing with time encoding. The chips can be designed specifically for certain algorithms or allow for general computations. Quandela says its platform integrates with classical photonic technology, uses modules that are interconnected with optical fibers, and operates largely at room temperature. Funds will be used for international expansion and to increase production of its quantum computers. Founded in 2017 based on research from the CNRS Centre for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, Quandela is headquartered in Massy, France.

Nu Quantum received £7.0M (~$8.6M) in a pre-Series A round led by Amadeus Capital Partners, Expeditions Fund, and IQ Capital, joined by previous investors Ahren Capital, Seraphim Capital, University of Cambridge, Martlet Capital, and new investors Presidio Ventures, the National Security Strategic Investment Fund, and Deeptech Labs. Nu Quantum is building quantum networking infrastructure. Its approach is to interconnect many smaller cores using a Quantum Networking Unit (QNU) capable of efficiently scaling discrete Quantum Processing Units (QPU) to form a larger and more useful quantum computer. The startup is developing full hardware solutions to create entangled qubit networks, including a high-speed computer network interface, photonic switching fabric, and control systems with the aim of enabling multi-core quantum supercomputers and quantum data centers. A spin out from the University of Cambridge founded in 2018, it is based in Cambridge, UK.

Entropica Labs raised $4.7M in Series A funding led by Liftt and Wavemaker Partners, joined by SEEDS Capital, CerraCap Ventures, SUTD Venture Holdings, and Elev8 VC. Entropica Labs is developing quantum software development tools help to design fault-tolerant versions of quantum circuits and algorithms. It also offers a suite of physics-based solvers for optimization and benchmarking the performances of quantum algorithms. Funds will be used for hiring and further testing of its software on real quantum hardware. A spin out from the National University of Singapore founded in 2018, it is based in Singapore.

Quoherent drew $4.7M in seed funding led by Morpheus Ventures and joined by Draper Associates, Khosla Ventures, and Alpha Edison. Quoherent is developing solid state quantum processors leveraging topological materials that enable ambient temperature operation and edge capability with low quantum noise. It says its approach allows construction of quantum processors on silicon, making them scalable and capable of integrating with standard PCB technology. Founded in 2021, it is based in Huntsville, Alabama, USA.


Inuchip, also known as Yinniu Microelectronics, drew over CNY 500.0M (~$69.9M) in a Series A round led by Hefei Industry Investment Group and Accurate Capital. Inuchip develops 3D visual perception processing SoCs and modules that integrate multi-sensor fusion, AI, and simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM). It targets applications such as robotics, metaverse, consumer electronics, drones, and 3D scanning. Funds will be used for R&D and hiring. Founded in 2020, it is based in Hefei, China.

SiLC Technologies drew $25.0M in funding from new strategic investors Hokuyo Automatic, Hankook & Company, and ROHM Semiconductor, alongside existing investors including Epson, Yamato Holdings, UMC Capital, Sony, Dell Technologies Capital, and Alter Venture Partners. SiLC offers silicon photonic vision chips based on frequency modulated continuous wave (FMCW) lidar. Its chips integrate all photonics functions needed to enable a coherent 4D vision sensor and support vision detection capabilities that span from short distances to over 1 km. It targets a range of applications, including robotics, autonomous vehicles, biometrics, security, and industrial automation. Funds will be used to expand production and for continued product development. Founded in 2018, it is based in Monrovia, California, USA, and has raised $56M to date.

Boréas Technologies received $12.0M in Series B financing. The company makes ultra-low-power piezo haptic semiconductors. Its piezoelectric actuator drivers support localized haptic feedback as well as integrated force sensing for applications such as smartphones, trackpads, wearables, and automotive. The drivers include an energy-recovery capability to provide power savings in resource-constrained devices. Founded in 2016, it is based in Bromont, Québec, Canada.


Ingonyama drew $20.0M in seed funding led by Walden Catalyst, joined by BlueYard Capital, Samsung Next, Sentinel Global, and others. Ingonyama is developing a programmable parallel computing processor for acceleration of zero-knowledge proofs and fully homomorphic encryption. The startup also offers software libraries for cryptography acceleration on GPUs and FPGAs. Founded in 2021, it is based in Petah Tiqva, Israel.

Displays & AR/VR

Cellid received JPY 2,280.0M (~$15.1M) in financing from SMBC Nikko Securities and others. Cellid offers display modules for AR glasses that combine waveguides and a micro projector for a 60° field of view. It also has visual simultaneous localization and mapping (VSLAM) software. Funds will be used to establish mass production and quality control systems, accelerate process development, and for development and sales of 3D model creation software. Founded in 2016, it is based in Tokyo, Japan.

Brilliance RGB raised €2.0M (~$2.2M) in seed funding from Oost NL and PhotonVentures. Brilliance makes RGB laser projection chips for AR/VR glasses. Built on a silicon-nitride based photonic IC platform using flip chip packaging, the startup says the small, low power RGB laser module can project sharp, colorful images onto glass surfaces such as eyeglass lenses and car windows. Funds will be used to develop proof-of-concept chips into customer-specific prototypes and scale up the silicon-nitride-based PIC technology. Founded in 2023, it is based in Enschede, the Netherlands.


May Mobility closed a $105.0M Series D round led by NTT Group and joined by Toyota Ventures, Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance Company, State Farm Ventures, BMW i Ventures, Cyrus Capital, Trucks Venture Capital, and Millennium Technology Value Partners. May Mobility operates autonomous shuttle services that have been deployed in cities as well as corporate and university campuses. Its system combines lidar, radar, and cameras with its ‘Multi-Policy Decision Making’ technology for simulating the behavior of other road users to adaptively handle situations it hasn’t encountered before. Funds will support scaling operations and commercialization of its AV technology and services in the United States, Canada, and Japan. Founded in 2017, it is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, and has raised $300M to date.


Company Sector Amount Raised (M, USD) Funding Type HQ
Biren Technology AI HW $280.0 Venture China
Northvolt Batteries $150.0 Convertible Note Sweden
Aerospace Powercell Batteries $140.1 Series A China
Element Energy Batteries $111.0 Series B & Debt USA
May Mobility ADAS & Autonomy $105.0 Series D USA
Oxford Quantum Circuits Quantum $100.0 Series B UK
Photonic Quantum $100.0 Venture Canada
Inuchip Sensors $69.9 Series A China
Eacon Mining Technology ADAS & Autonomy $55.2 Venture China
Quandela Quantum $53.4 Venture France
SMT Intelligence Manufacturing $49.7 Venture Canada
Niron Magnetics Materials $33.0 Venture USA
PhysicsX EDA Adjacent $32.0 Series A UK
Shanghai Lianfeng Materials $27.4 Series B China
SiLC Technologies Sensors $25.0 Series A USA
Ingonyama Security $20.0 Seed Israel
Rokid AR/VR $20.0 Strategic China
PICadvanced Photonics $18.5 Grant & Venture Portugal
Princeton NuEnergy Batteries $16.0 Series A USA
Secondmind Auto Components $16.0 Venture UK
Aclarity Manufacturing $15.9 Series A USA
Cellid AR/VR $15.1 Venture Japan
Beichen Innovation Batteries $13.8 Series A China
Benewake Auto Sensors $13.8 Strategic China
Easpeed Technology AR/VR $13.8 Series B China
Intesim EDA Adjacent $13.8 Venture China
Pregis New Materials Thermal Management $13.8 Series A China
Sencoch Semiconductor Sensors $13.8 Series B China
Tosun Technology Auto Components $13.8 Series A+ China
Wonsor Technology Equipment $13.8 Pre-A China
Yinguan Semiconductor Equipment $13.8 Venture China
VSORA AI HW $13.2 Grant & Venture France
Boréas Technologies Sensors $12.0 Series B Canada
Nu Quantum Quantum $8.6 Pre-A UK
Nanopower Semiconductor Power Semi $8.0 Grant & Venture Norway
QuantumDiamonds Test & Inspection $7.7 Seed & Grant Germany
CASMT Intelligent Manufacturing Batteries $6.9 Series B+ China
Unchained Robotics Equipment $6.0 Venture Germany
Vrgineers AR/VR $6.0 Series A USA
Ghost Autonomy ADAS & Autonomy $5.0 Venture USA
Entropica Labs Quantum $4.7 Series A Singapore
Quoherent Quantum $4.7 Seed USA
Veecle Auto Components $2.9 Seed Germany
Injectsense Sensors $2.5 Convertible Note USA
Brilliance RGB AR/VR $2.2 Seed Netherlands
QSimulate Quantum $1.5 Venture USA
GRST Batteries $1.2 Grant China
Spherical Systems Processors & Network $1.1 Pre-Seed Netherlands
Ion Membranes Batteries $0.8 Seed Turkiye
Chiral Nano Materials $0.2 Accelerator Switzerland
Aquark Technologies Quantum $0.1 Grant UK
Ephos Quantum $0.1 Grant Italy
G2-Zero Quantum $0.1 Grant Spain
Grayscale AI ADAS & Autonomy $0.1 Grant UK
LevelQuantum Security $0.1 Grant Italy
Phantom Photonics Sensors $0.1 Grant Canada
Qubitrium Security $0.1 Grant Turkiye
Secqai Security $0.1 Grant UK
Sotiria Technology Sensors $0.1 Grant Greece


Footnote on name inconsistencies

Some Chinese companies inconsistently represent their names in translation or appear to have multiple names, some of which may be artifacts of an Internet translation engine’s best guess in translating the companies’ names from Chinese characters into the Latin alphabet for Western consumption. Semiconductor Engineering cannot independently verify a company’s preferred name in the Latin alphabet, but a logotype on a company building or website is likely the correct company name in English.


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