At a Glance
Simon Hartley, US Sales & Business Development, Quantinuum
Focus Areas: Cybersecurity, Privacy, Autonomous Vehicles, Mobility
Thinkers360 In-Depth Profile & Portfolio: Simon Hartley
Thinkers360 Leaderboards: Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Mobility 2022, Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Emerging Technology (April 2021), Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Cybersecurity (November 2019)
Thought Leader Interview
Thinkers360 thought leader interviews profile prominent members of the Thinkers360 community who embody the power of ideas in their work. In this edition, we speak with Simon Hartley, US Sales & Business Development at Quantinuum.
Simon is a startup advisor, author, and speaker, a veteran of successful startups and Fortune 100 companies, and a subject matter expert in the business of quantum, cybersecurity, and hardening critical infrastructure. He recently joined Quantinuum to accelerate US Sales and Business Development in quantum technologies.
Previously, Simon introduced the altOS mobile security platform with startup CIS Mobile, after earlier working with Apple and Samsung to harden their platforms for US Government security needs. Prior to that, Simon was VP Business Development/Co-Founder of $25 million IoT cybersecurity startup RunSafe Security, VP Sales & Marketing at mobile cybersecurity startup Kaprica Security (now Samsung), and Director Worldwide Sales & Marketing re-starting Thursby Software (now Identiv) in mobile security.
He began his career in nuclear software engineering in England and France. He then held executive roles at HP, Red Hat, and Capgemini. Past end customers include the IC, DoD, and Federal Civilian agencies (government), Morgan Stanley and PayPal (finance), Epic and ManorCare (healthcare), Bosch and Lear (transport), Chevron, and EDF (energy).
Simon is featured in the annual listings of the Thinkers360 Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Mobility 2022, Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Emerging Technology (April 2021), and Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Cybersecurity (November 2019) as well.
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Thinkers360: Tell us a bit about your background and areas of expertise
SH: I am a veteran of Fortune 100 companies and successful startups, and an expert in the business of quantum, cybersecurity, and mobility. I recently joined Quantinuum, a US-based $300-million quantum company, and am also a startup advisor, author, and speaker.
My specialty is in innovative new enterprise software that delivers a competitive advantage to organizations including the US Government, Samsung, Morgan Stanley, PayPal, Bosch, and Chevron. Delivery has been from established vendors and startups formed around those new products and markets.
I began my career in nuclear software engineering in England and France and then held US executive roles with HP, Red Hat, and Capgemini. I launched (or re-launched) mobile cybersecurity startups CIS Mobile, RunSafe Security, Kaprica Security (exited to Samsung), and Thursby Software (exited to Identiv).
Thinkers360: What are your current responsibilities and what’s a typical day look like?
SH: I am driving the adoption of quantum technologies in the US, focusing on Government and critical infrastructure.
My days are varied, focusing on the needs of customers, partners, academia, events, and in coordinating with the global teams of PHDs, product managers, and engineers that make the magic possible at Quantinuum.
There is both a threat and a promise aspect to quantum technologies. I work with organizations to keep missions on track, employees, and the public safe by mitigating the risk of cyberattacks by nation-states and criminals in using quantum hardening for cryptography. This is a threat that POTUS has been strongly highlighting this year.
I also work on research collaborations with government, industry, and academia to solve difficult technical problems in ways that were not previously possible, everything from how to make better batteries, pulling carbon dioxide from the air, and developing better self-driving cars in using quantum chemistry and AI.
Pre-Covid, I had the privilege of presenting at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) World on cybersecurity risks for connected and automated vehicles.
Thinkers360: What’s the favorite part of your current role?
SH: I love the education and growth around emerging technology like quantum. That is everything from briefings, to uncovering the value drivers and best use cases for customers, to pilots, to production projects to programs among blossoming partner ecosystems. It really does take a village, a self-reinforcing spiral of success with many stakeholders.
I prefer the early stages of what business schools call the “S-curve of innovation,” where new technology is beginning to shine. It is typically a David vs. Goliath affair when incumbents realize the foreshadowed end-of-life in their technologies. Gandhi summarized this kind of fight against the tide of progress as “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
Thinkers360: How do you utilize Thinkers360?
SH: Thinkers360 is a great platform. I use it to showcase my recent work. It puts my content into a wider context of related areas and quantitatively assesses it. Those insights help me improve the work and see how it measures up against others in my communities of interest.
See Simon’s Thinkers360 Profile: Simon Hartley
Thinkers360: How do you like to work with brands who wish to engage you as a thought leader?
SH: The main ways to engage with me are through articles, social media, or via events. It is great to be travelling and doing in-person events once again, post-Covid. I can speak broadly at a business level, and/or work with a strong team of product managers and PHDs around the cutting-edge technical aspects of quantum cybersecurity, chemistry, or AI research.
I love to give back to the community, working with groups like ATARC Technology Transfer, NextGen Venture Partners, Rancher Government Solutions, and the MACH37 Cyber Accelerator.
Thinkers360: Are there any media projects that you are currently working on?
SH: I am working with the SAE editors as a contributor to their new book “Cybersecurity for Entrepreneurs,” following a previous successful collaboration in “Cybersecurity for Commercial Vehicles.”
Entrepreneurs and small business owners must develop expertise in all aspects of starting and running a business – accounting, marketing, operations, human resources, and so on. While traditional entrepreneurship courses and books cover those topics, this new book covers the neglected topic of cybersecurity for the average person. This book encourages people to be aware of the likelihood of a cyber-attack, the impacts that would occur, and the importance of continually addressing those possibilities.
Thinkers360: What’s your main advice for upcoming thought leaders?
SH: Work to be original. Develop an insightful lens through which to view the world. What is trying to happen here? Who is rising? Who is falling? Who is waiting in the wings? Typical journalistic rules of newsworthiness apply – timeliness, proximity, conflict/controversy, human interest, and especially relevance. It’s disappointing to see exciting “click-bait” headlines and then content that is banal and the same in a thousand places.
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