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Los Alamos startup to add 20 jobs

SANTA FE, N.M. — A Los Alamos-based startup will add 20 jobs as it expands its headquarters and manufacturing plant in the northern New Mexico city, state Economic Development Secretary Matt Geisel announced today.

Ubiquitous Quantum Dots, or UbiQD, is investing $1 million into the expansion, Geisel said in a written statement.

The company last month announced it had received a $350,000 investment from Breakout Labs, a San Francisco-based fund set up by the Thiel Foundation to provide early-stage financing to companies taking new, science-based technologies to market.

The three-year-old startup is using a proprietary process to manufacture quantum dots with technology licensed from Los Alamos National Laboratory and the  Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The additional jobs at UbiQD follows last week’s news that  Descartes Labs Inc. of Santa Fe hopes to expand by between 70 and 90 jobs within five years. Descartes, which moved its headquarters from Los Alamos to Santa Fe earlier year, will receive $500,000 in state funding  and is seeking $100,000 in local economic development funding.

According to city documents, Descartes Labs is expected to contribute $4.2 million over five years — $2 million for building improvements and $2.2 million in lease payments.

Descartes Labs, founded in 2014 by a team that included some former Los Alamos National Laboratory employees, utilizes artificial intelligence software licensed by LANL to aggregate publicly accessible satellite images to analyze trends in such areas as urban sprawl, renewable energy infrastructure, the environment and agriculture.

Last month, the company announced that it had signed a 10-year lease for 18,000 square feet of space at the Firestone Building at the northwest corner of the intersection of West Alameda and Guadalupe streets with the intention of converting it to its world headquarters.

Descartes Labs also has offices in New York City, San Francisco and is maintaining an office in Los Alamos.

The state will provide $125,000 to UbiQD, and Los Alamos County will provide $325,000 to the company, he said.

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