$1M USD Salary to Work for Japan’s NTT Group as Quantum Computing Scientist; a Rare Move for Traditional Japanese Firm
NTT offers researchers $1 million salaries in bid to lure top talent in cryptography, quantum computing
+ Telecom giant NTT Group is offering record pay to hire top scientists as it looks to match some of the basic research prowess of global powerhouses including Alphabet Inc. and Apple Inc. The former Japanese telephone monopoly has set annual salaries of as much as $1 million (¥108.45 million) for researchers at its labs in Palo Alto, California, said Kazuhiro Gomi, president of the company’s research arm. That’s more than the company pays its chief executive officer and 41-year veteran Jun Sawada, and a rare step for a traditional Japanese company like NTT.
“We are competing with companies like Google and Apple,” said Gomi, explaining that the company had traditionally followed the Japanese norm of modest pay. “It wouldn’t be possible several years back.”
+ The increased investment in basic science comes as NTT is regrouping its businesses to focus more on cloud computing services and data centers amid a dimming outlook for profit from its mainstay mobile phone carrier. Having star scientists on the lab’s payroll, backed by a ¥25 billion five-year budget, helps the group draw better technology workers and partners as it wages a global war for the top talent it needs to expand globally, Gomi said.
+ The talent NTT is gathering is focused on cryptography, quantum computing and medical informatics in a bet that these fields can yield breakthroughs on a horizon of five years or more, said Kei Karasawa, vice president of corporate strategy for NTT Research.
+ The lab also needs big name scientists because for most top researchers, high pay alone isn’t enough, said Karasawa. Scientists strongly prefer to work with the leaders in their field, he said.
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