Caruso to work on new states of matter with ColdQuanta after

Caruso to work on new states of matter with ColdQuanta after Zayo

16 March 2021 | Alan Burkitt-Gray

Cover

Dan Caruso is to become executive chairman and interim CEO of a company that is exploiting quantum physics for computing and networking.

The founder of Zayo will take up the role in ColdQuanta, which has emerged from research at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Caruso (pictured), who left Zayo in October 2020, six months after it was bought for US$14.3 billion by Digital Colony and EQT, said: “ColdQuanta will contribute to a fundamental transformation from humankind’s classical history to its quantum destiny. The company's innovation in cold atom quantum technology will play a pivotal role in the most seismic revolution since the launch of the internet.”

The company is not quite a start-up: it dates back to 2007, when Dana Anderson, a professor at the university, set it up to work on the so-called Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC), a new state of matter. Anderson demonstrated the first transportable BEC machine in 2010.

Anderson, who is CTO of ColdQuanta, said: “Dan is a consummate company builder with an impeccable track record of great success and value creation for employees and shareholders. Under his leadership and vision ColdQuanta will experience massive growth in the application of quantum.”

The company said that it has developed “world-leading expertise in the most scalable, versatile and commercially viable area of quantum, the cold atom method”.

The idea of BEC dates back to 1924, when Albert Einstein and Satyendra Nath Bose proposed what they thought of as the fifth form of matter. Earlier work on BEC at the University of Colorado at Boulder won the 2001 Nobel Prize in physics for Eric Cornell and Carl Wieman.

Caruso said: “ColdQuanta has 90 fantastic employees, most of whom are quantum physicists, scientists, and engineers.”

The physics can be used for computing, sensing and networking, said ColdQuanta, which said its cold atom method is applicable to all of these markets, reimagining mainstay applications such as global positioning systems to modern quantum positioning systems and the conventional internet to the quantum internet.

Caruso said: “As I dove deeper into ColdQuanta, I began to more fully appreciate the magnitude of the opportunity. I believe ColdQuanta will be my fourth decacorn, and it will by far be the most important.”

Before Zayo, Caruso founded three other highly successful companies in the telecoms industry: Zayo, Level 3 Communications and MFS Communications.

Caruso is taking over from Bo Ewald, the previous CEO, who has announced his retirement after a career that has seen him lead companies such as Linux Networx and Silicon Graphics. Caruso will serve as CEO until the board finds a permanent replacement for Ewald.