Tuesday, August 14

Standard Chartered takes first quantum steps

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In an interview with QuantMinds International, Standard Chartered’s MD of financial markets, Alexei Kondratyev, talked about the bank’s forays into quantum computing.

Quantum technologies promise to solve problems not solvable using classical computing, particularly in terms of running simulations that are not feasible on classical digital computers, explained Kondratyev.

As an example, he pointed to the simulation of complex quantum mechanical systems like molecules, which is why the pharmaceuticals industry has been at the forefront of research.

Finance is still finding its footing with quantum computing, and for now it remains at the research stage.

Still, all major technology companies now heavily invest into quantum technologies, often in partnership with large financial institutions, he noted.

“The age of quantum computing is coming and we are not that far from widespread usage of quantum computing in real life,” said Kondratyev.

Standard Chartered is in a partnership with US space agency NASA’s University Space Research Association, in which it conducts research on soil optimization using quantum computing technology.

“It allows us to learn a lot about quantum computing and we believe that Standard Chartered can become a pioneer of various applications of quantum computing technologies in finance,” he said.

What that means is building an institutional knowledge of quantum computing within the organization and having a chance to try various quantum computing technologies, which should translate to competitive advantage over time.

Some initial results have been promising, said Kondratyev, particularly in solving larger portfolio optimization problems and using quantum annealing.

“We hope to continue our research and get more results,” he added.

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