Alibaba Downsizes, Closes Quantum Lab

Company donates lab and equipment to Zhejiang University

Berenice Baker, Editor, Enter Quantum

November 28, 2023

1 Min Read
An Alibaba office and sign
Alibaba has close its quantum laboratory. Getty

Chinese tech giant Alibaba has closed its DAMO Academy quantum computing research lab, laying off 30 staff as part of a company-wide overhaul to shore up profit margins.

The company said it would donate the lab and equipment to Zhejiang University, where some of the staff could be reallocated.

The move follows months of upheavals. In March, the company announced it would split into six separate divisions, including spinning off and listing its cloud services division.

In September, Joseph Tsai succeeded Daniel Zhang as group chair and Eddie Wu took over Zhang’s role as group CEO. The pair then canceled the spinoff.

The DAMO Academy was Alibaba’s Moonshot division, founded in 2017 to research emerging technologies including quantum, the metaverse, robots and semiconductor design.

An Alibaba spokesperson said it would now concentrate on becoming a leader in AI research.

Alibaba has downsized its workforce significantly since 2022, laying off more than 30,000 employees.

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About the Author(s)

Berenice Baker

Editor, Enter Quantum

Berenice is the editor of Enter Quantum, the companion website and exclusive content outlet for The Quantum Computing Summit. Enter Quantum informs quantum computing decision-makers and solutions creators with timely information, business applications and best practice to enable them to adopt the most effective quantum computing solution for their businesses. Berenice has a background in IT and 16 years’ experience as a technology journalist.

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