The quantum computing start-up IQM Finland Oy develops next generation quantum computers. IQM’s inception dates back to 2018, when four quantum tech PhDs from Aalto University and VTT decided that their exceptional expertise is worth commercialising.
A spectacular 11,2 million euro Seed Round
IQM has been advised by Turre Legal from the very beginning. Founder and CTO Juha Vartiainen talks of the early days of the company:
– We were about to receive a considerable investment and wanted to ensure that the first steps of the company were professional and legally sound. We wanted Turre Legal to help us in successfully realising our first investment round.
IQM managed to raise 11,2 million euros, which is one of the highest ever in Finland.
Turre Legal advised IQM during the investment round and in the drafting of the investment agreement.
– Turre Legal was able to provide us with a complete package for the legal needs we had for the investment round, Vartiainen commends.
The process ran smoothly as the lawyers of Turre Legal explained the instances in which IQM would require decisions by the Board and the General Assembly of the company, and prepared all the necessary paperwork well in advance, so that everything could be resolved in the correct order and registered with the trade register at the right time and in the right form.
– Turre Legal helped secure all the checkpoints and steered us safely through the investment round. They were orchestrating the whole thing.
Co-operation with the investors was much easier as all of IQM’s operations were professional and legal counsel was employed from the get-go. We could negotiate with confidence, being certain that there were no skeletons in our closet.
Managing boardwork from Finland to Germany
In addition to counsel during the investment round, Turre Legal has also advised IQM with foreign investors. IQM has for example set up a subsidiary in Germany.
– Finnish companies legislation is slightly different from that of Germany, Vartiainen says.
IQM’s CEO Jan Goetz and Chairman of the Board Axel Thierauf are German themselves. Turre Legal has helped both in dealing with Finnish investors. Turre Legal has been actively facilitating the boardwork of IQM in order to ensure that everything is in accordance with Finnish laws.
Turre Legal has advised the German parties as an expert of Finnish legal system.
Growth from zero to hundred in two years
Within the first year and a half of IQM’s operations, the number of employees has grown from zero to over seventy, with the goal of one hundred rapidly closing.
– At first we thought that the first couple of years would mostly be spent with product development, but here we are negotiating our first sales. Our start has been exceedingly fast, much quicker than anticipated, Vartiainen says.
– Things have been quite busy. It has been good that we had a strong set of model contracts from the beginning. There has been no need to stress over employment agreements, for example.
Turre Legal has provided IQM with several legally required documents down the road. With the COVID19 -pandemic, remote working agreement has come in handy.
Workplaces are required by law to have in place dozens of different HR-policies and -documents. As the company grows, so do the responsibilities. Turre Legal has a complete package taking care of that responsibility, that is further tailored for each company to ensure a perfect fit. The package includes all the necessary contract templates and HR -policies.
– It was for sure easier, when we didn’t have to start drafting from nothing or to hunt from somewhere else a suitable package. After Turre Legal walked it through with us, we know what we have fulfilled every legal requirement – and then some. The ease and effortlessness of it all were the greatest advantages, Vartiainen says.
Turre Legal provided the personnel with guidance on where to find the HR -documents and what are they used for.
– We received from Turre Legal all the necessary guidance in a single neat package, Vartiainen thanks.
Why Turre Legal?
– Working with Turre Legal has been flexible and modern. They are ready and equipped to use all of our electronic tools, Vartiainen explains.
– Turre Legal works professionally and with an attitude suitable for a start-up entrepreneur. They could offer us lean and quick solutions, Vartiainen pictures.
Vartiainen thinks that Turre Legal’s greatest advantage lies in comprehensive understanding of the technology field. He heartily recommends Turre Legal’s services for other start-up companies with growth in their sights. It is worth it to take proper care of legal affairs right from the start.
– If anyone is planning for an investment round, I would definitely employ legal counsel, Vartiainen says.
– With the caveat that lawyers do come with a price-tag, Vartiainen laughs.