JP Morgan Chase poaches an IBM ‘Master Inventor’ with 26 patents for quantum computing

Marco Pistoia, Global Technology’s Head of Applied Research and Engineering at JP Morgan.

Source: JP Morgan

J.P. Morgan Chase has hired a veteran IBM researcher to lead a new group working on emerging technologies including quantum computing.

Marco Pistoia, who spent 24 years at IBM and managed a team responsible for quantum computing algorithms, is joining New York-based J.P. Morgan as head of applied research and engineering, according to a memo sent to employees Tuesday and obtained by CNBC. 

He will be lead researcher for the bank’s Future Lab for Applied Research & Engineering, a team created late last year to help it develop financial uses for advanced technologies like quantum computing, edge computing, 5G wireless and the internet of things.

J.P. Morgan’s latest high-profile hire shows that the bank is willing to make bets on advanced forms of technology without immediate applications in finance. In 2018, the bank hired a noted figure in artificial intelligence research from Carnegie Mellon University, Manuela Veloso, to head its AI research department. J.P. Morgan has an annual tech budget of more than $11 billion.

At IBM, Pistoia had the title of Master Inventor, a designation given to a handful of researchers who regularly produce valuable patents. He has been granted 197 patents and holds hundreds more patent-pending applications, including 26 in quantum computing, which uses quantum physics to tackle problems that would take years for existing computers to solve.

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