Qarnot Computing closes Series B funding round at €6 million to accelerate its growth


A syndicate of investors including Banque des TerritoiresCaisse des DépôtsEngie Rassembleur d’ÉnergiesA/O PropTech, and Groupe Casino, have invested €6 million in Qarnot Computing to support its future growth.

FieldHouse Associates

Qarnot is the first company to offer climate-conscious, high performance cloud computing. Qarnot sells cloud computing capacity to clients and uses the wasted heat generated from its computer servers to heat buildings and water sustainably. Data centres – that are mostly owned by ‘Big Tech’ companies – consumed about 3% of the world’s total energy supply in 2018, equivalent to the global airline industry. Demand for computing capacity is growing at a double digit rate even as it contributes to climate change.

Qarnot Computing is focused building distributed, economical, ecological and sovereign infrastructure, with the continued installation of QH-1 computer heaters (buildings), QB-1 digital boilers (water) and QS-1 computing racks (warehouses).

This recent funding follows a period of intense product development and sales activity, resulting in  Qarnot doubling it’s turnover for the past two years. In 2018 and 2019, Qarnot has significantly accelerated its R&D  activity and ambitions for tackling climate change.

  • After two years of intense R&D the QB-1 digital boiler was launched for producing hot water with microchips. The first units were sold in France and Finland
  • The first HPC site of the ScaleMax joint venture with the Groupe Casino was installed to heat warehouses and store reserves in an environmentally friendly way
  • Qarnot has significantly accelerated its footprint in the 3D animation market, and has recently signed a contract with Illumination Mac Guff (Universal Pictures)
  • Qarnot is the only cloud computing provider to serve the three major French banks: BNP Paribas, Société Générale, and Natixis.
  • Across France, nearly 1,000 social housing units are heated by Qarnot. In Bordeaux, Qarnot’s technology is being used to heat an entire building using heat generated by computers (Bordeaux – Gironde Habitat – 346 QH-1) – a world first.

The €6 million investment will enable Qarnot to become the European leader in high performance computing (HPC). With the support of the syndicate of its investment partner, Qarnot can continue to accelerate the growth and diversification of its customer base.

Qarnot will continue to focus on its in-house R&D, which will be consolidated to ensure the company maintains its technological lead in the market. This will be achieved through an ambitious recruitment plan, with a particular focus on IT and commercial roles.

Paul Benoit, President of Qarnot Computing, comments on this recent milestone: “This fundraising will enable us to take another step forward and accelerate our growth around our range of products and services that are already recognised and in-demand”.

“Our new investors share Qarnot’s vision, focusing on the highly strategic sectors of high-performance computing and energy efficiency in buildings. We look forward to working together, with the same values and the same desire!

Othmane Zrikem, Chief Data Officer, A/O PropTech said: “Qarnot uses energy to run high performance computing (HPC) while leveraging the heat generated by microchips to heat residential units and sanitized water in commercial buildings. It reduces the CO2 footprint of computer servers by 78% compared to traditional data centre solutions. As the need for HPC continues to grow in many industries (banking, pharmaceutical, 3D animation, etc) the market for Qarnot will grow substantially in Europe. At A/O PropTech, we are looking to invest in companies that intersect climate-tech and proptech. In other words, companies enabling the decarbonisation of the real estate industry, of which Qarnot is an excellent example.”

Qarnot Computing clients BNP Paribas, Illumination MacGuff and Natixis commented on the impact the technology has had for their companies.

Antoine Sire, Director of the Company Engagement Department and Member of the Executive Committee, BNP Paribas: “Qarnot first seduced us with this revolutionary idea, which reconciles technology and ecology. Then, they quickly established themselves as one of the pillars of the French cloud, thanks to their seriousness, their technological lead and the quality of their work. We are proud to have built partnerships with them that have a strong environmental and social impact.”

Bruno Mahé, Head of Technology, Illumination MacGuffUniversal Pictures: “We were won over by Qarnot’s responsiveness and expertise, which enabled us to use our rendering engine on more than 15,000 calculation cores over four months for a major 3D production run.”

Nathanael Zimero, CIO Equity & Commodity Markets, Natixis: “Qarnot is a real alternative to the American cloud players, particularly in terms of competitiveness and the technological and environmental quality of their offering.”