Meet the winners of the IQM Innovation Awards 2023

IQM Quantum Computers has held its inaugural IQM Innovation Awards in Helsinki, Finland, to recognise its employees for their inventions in 2022.

It was a night to remember, filled with glitz, glamour, fun, and, of course, the celebration of the winners and nominees.

The awards also aimed to promote brilliant work and the company values of trust, collaboration, and ambition, said the Chairwoman of the Awards Committee and Head of Intellectual Property at IQM Quantum Computers, Jatta Toro, in her welcoming remarks.

Innovation has always been part of IQM’s DNA. The number of submitted inventions doubled in 2022, demonstrating the company's active inventor community. The awards committee received around 100 inventions and ideas from more than 50 employees in 2022, and the committee was really impressed with the quality of the entries.

“There were lots of high-quality inventions and innovations where the inventors had shown excellent examples of cross-team collaboration and invented scientifically and technically significant solutions, some of which have made their way not only to patent applications but to scientific papers and to IQM’s products and technology road map. Some of them have also been developed around real-life problems and customer needs, so they are not only theoretical but practical solutions that should bring added business value to IQM,” Toro said.

In his keynote speech, the Chief Technology Officer and Co-founder at IQM Quantum Computers, Dr. Kuan Yen Tan, said IQM is proud to celebrate its brightest minds through the Innovation Awards, and the event highlights the exceptional talent, dedication, and passion for innovation within the company.

“As we honour ground-breaking achievements, we continue fostering a culture of curiosity, ambition, and collaboration, empowering employees to push boundaries. The spirit of innovation is IQM's lifeblood, and these awards express our appreciation for the brilliant individuals driving our success,” he told the excited employees.

Here are the winners and what they said after receiving the award:

Inventor of the Year 2022: Pasi Lähteenmäki: “I feel pretty great. I wasn’t exactly expecting I would win, but I feel appreciated and motivated by winning this award.”

Inventor Team of the Year 2022: Design and Simulation Team: “As a design and simulation team, in order to engineer the best quantum processors with long-living qubits with high connectivity, we develop procedures, and communication between us leads to especially high creativity in solving our scientific and technological problems. We are proud to win this award. We believe that IQM is a great company and are happy to contribute to its success story,” said Vladimir Milchakov who spoke for the team.

Invention of the Year 2022: Methods for qubit frequency tuning: On behalf of the team, Mikko Möttönen said: “We came up with many different ways and managed to bundle the ideas together to arrive at a very nice patent application. There were many great inventions at IQM last year, so we are really honoured to get this award.”

Rising Stars of the Year 2022: Fermion-to-qubit mapping Team: “We are extremely excited to have won this award. This is a great team effort, we are happy about the result and hope to produce more inventions in the future,” remarked Fedor Šimkovic, on behalf of his colleagues.

Innovation Achievement of the Year 2022: IQM Tunable Coupler. “It is a great honour to represent the team on stage for the award. Many people from different functions contributed to this paper because it has been one of the core novelties of our architecture that has stood the test of time and has also been accepted as a strategic paper in a scientific journal,” said Johannes Heinsoo.

Looking ahead, Toro said promoting innovation is important for IQM, and the committee hopes this event will encourage new teams and inventors to start inventing, and hopefully the employees will collaborate more and produce ambitious ideas and inventions in the future.


Michael Sarpong Bruce is a Communications Specialist at IQM. He has over ten years of experience in marketing and communications across diverse industries, including mining, telecommunications, and insurance. He is also a former business journalist and has experience in public relations and media buying agencies.