Sandbox AQ, the AI and quantum firm spun out of Google parent company Alphabet in 2022, has acquired Good Chemistry, a Vancouver-based quantum and computational chemistry startup, for an undisclosed sum.
Good Chemistry, founded by Arman Zaribafiyan in 2021 as a spin-off of quantum computing company 1QBit and backed by investors including Green Sands Equity and Accenture Ventures, offers cloud-based tools to accelerate material design. Good Chemistry’s platform lets chemistry developers build chemical simulation apps and workflows using algorithms in quantum chemistry and machine learning as well as quantum computing.
In a press release, Sandbox AQ VP Nadia Carlsten said that the acquisition will expand Sandbox’s global presence in addition to adding “proven technologies,” including simulation technologies, and major customers (such as Dow Chemical) to its portfolio. New investors are a part of the deal, too — all of Good Chemistry’s backers have joined Sandbox AQ’s investor base, Carlsten added.
“Good Chemistry’s software and existing partnerships will enable us to rapidly accelerate how we bring the benefits of advanced simulation and AI tools to more customers,” Carlsten said. “Combining our capabilities will give Sandbox AQ an advanced and scalable computing platform for highly accurate chemical simulation on a scale that makes impactful use cases such as new drug and material synthesis possible.”
Sandbox AQ sees simulation as increasingly central to its work, which spans drug discovery and material design across the agricultural, defense, energy, medical and manufacturing sectors. With Good Chemistry, the company gains 25 computational and quantum chemists, AI and software engineers and quantum computing scientists skilled in leveraging simulation tech; tellingly, Zaribafiyan is joining Sandbox as head of product for simulation platforms while Good Chemistry’s staff is assuming roles in Sandbox’s existing simulation teams.
“The rapid advances in AI, quantum, cloud and high-performance computing have unlocked endless opportunities for companies like Good Chemistry and Sandbox AQ to reinvent the way we think about chemistry, discover ways to make products safer, stronger and more sustainable, and reshape the fabric of our world,” Zaribafiyan said in a canned statement. “[Tapping] the broader Sandbox AQ reach and domain expertise will supercharge the capabilities of our platform.”
As part of the acquisition, Sandbox AQ says that it’ll integrate Good Chemistry’s software, Qemist Cloud and Tangelo, into its enterprise software portfolio. Qemist lets users take advantage of quantum chemistry through simulation, while Tangelo allows them to conduct chemistry experiments across quantum cloud providers and hardware devices.
Good Chemistry is Sandbox’s second acquisition. In 2022, it bought Cryptosense, an enterprise-focused software-as-a-service cybersecurity and encryption startup.