Sam Altman Joins Microsoft’s AI Research Team After Being Ousted as CEO of OpenAI

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Image: OpenAI

One AI giant’s loss is another AI giant’s gain, it seems.

Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, has announced that he has hired Sam Altman after the co-founder and CEO of Open AI was kicked out of his own company by the board last week for vague reasons, which, while unfortunate, has resulted in at least some sort of silver lining, with Altman now being tasked with leading the Windows maker’s AI research team.

Joining Altman at Microsoft will be some of his other colleagues, including Greg Brockman, another leading member of OpenAI who helped co-found the company years back in December 2015.

Here’s Nadella tweet, where he suggests that he isn’t “furious” at OpenAI, as coverage from Bloomberg might imply, but that he’s definitely using the shakeup to his advantage:

We remain committed to our partnership with OpenAI and have confidence in our product roadmap, our ability to continue to innovate with everything we announced at Microsoft Ignite, and in continuing to support our customers and partners. We look forward to getting to know Emmett Shear and OAI’s new leadership team and working with them. And we’re extremely excited to share the news that Sam Altman and Greg Brockman, together with colleagues, will be joining Microsoft to lead a new advanced AI research team. We look forward to moving quickly to provide them with the resources needed for their success.

The OpenAI board was reportedly in discussions with Sam Altman to return as CEO, but apparently, that is no longer happening.

And here’s what OpenAI had to say about its leadership transition on Friday, when it named Mira Murati, the company’s chief technology officer, as its interim CEO. (Emmett Shear, the ex-CEO and co-founder of Twitch, has seemingly replaced her as interim CEO already.)

Mr. Altman’s departure follows a deliberative review process by the board, which concluded that he was not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities. The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI.

“OpenAI was deliberately structured to advance our mission: to ensure that artificial general intelligence benefits all humanity. The board remains fully committed to serving this mission. We are grateful for Sam’s many contributions to the founding and growth of OpenAI. At the same time, we believe new leadership is necessary as we move forward. As the leader of the company’s research, product, and safety functions, Mira is exceptionally qualified to step into the role of interim CEO. We have the utmost confidence in her ability to lead OpenAI during this transition period,” OpenAI’s board of directors added in a statement.

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Tsing Mui
Tsing has been writing the news for over 5 years, first at [H]ard|OCP and now at The FPS Review. He has a background in journalism and makes sure to give his readers the relevant context to why each news post matters.

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