Breaking News
Get 40% Off 0
Is NVDA a 🟢 buy or 🔴 sell? Unlock Now

Ousted OpenAI CEO Altman discusses possible return, mulls new AI venture-source

Published Nov 18, 2023 03:35PM ET Updated Nov 19, 2023 09:25AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Sam Altman, CEO of Microsoft-backed OpenAI and ChatGPT creator speaks during a talk at Tel Aviv University in Tel Aviv, Israel June 5, 2023. REUTERS/Amir Cohen/File Photo

(This Nov. 18 story has been refiled to correct the spelling of 'Khosla' in paragraph 6)

By Anna Tong, Krystal Hu and Jeffrey Dastin

(Reuters) - Sam Altman, the just ousted CEO of OpenAI, is discussing a possible return to the company behind the ChatGPT bot even as he considers launching a new artificial intelligence (AI) venture, a person briefed on the matter said on Saturday.

A day after the board fired him in a surprise move that rocked the tech world, Altman was talking with OpenAI executives about improving the company's governance structure while he discusses with some core OpenAI researchers and others loyal to Altman how they could start a new AI company, the person said.

The possibilities of a return or a restart for Altman, seen by many as the face of generative AI, are in flux, said the source, who asked not to be named because the source was not authorized to speak on behalf of the parties involved.

OpenAI and Altman did not reply to requests for comment.

Investors in OpenAI, including its biggest backer Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), are discussing damage control, including possibly pushing the board to restore Altman as CEO, fearing a mass exodus of talent without him, other sources said.

Khosla Ventures, an early backer of OpenAI, wants Altman back at OpenAI but "will back him in whatever he does next," the fund's founder Vinod Khosla posted on X on Saturday. 

Microsoft declined to comment. It reportedly owns 49% of the company, while other investors and employees control 49%, with 2% owned by OpenAI's nonprofit parent.

Emotions ran high on Saturday as current and former employees were angered by Altman's sacking and worried over how an upcoming $86 billion share sale could be affected by the sudden management upheaval.

OpenAI, a nonprofit co-founded by billionaire Elon Musk, launched ChatGPT on Nov. 30 last year, setting off a global sensation over generative AI technology that quickly became the world's fastest-growing software application. It set off a wave of investments and announcements across industries to use AI to enhance everything from financial services and healthcare to entertainment and media.

Trained on reams of data, generative AI can create human-like content, helping users spin up term papers, complete science homework and even write entire novels. After ChatGPT's launch, regulators scrambled to catch up: the European Union revised its AI Act and the U.S. kicked off AI regulation efforts.

By Saturday, some shell-shocked employees contemplated quitting if Altman was not restored by the end of the weekend, one source said. Others expressed support for joining Altman in starting a company, a third person familiar with the matter said.

Former OpenAI President Greg Brockman, who said he quit OpenAI over Altman's firing on Friday, is expected to join any effort, according to the Information, which earlier reported the possible new venture, citing a person familiar with the matter.

Brockman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. OpenAI did not respond to a request for comment.

Some researchers at OpenAI, including Szymon Sidor, have quit the company over the CEO change, but it was unclear if Sidor and others would join a new Altman venture, two people familiar with the matter said. Sidor confirmed quitting.

Altman and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)'s former design chief Jony Ive have been discussing building a new AI hardware device, the Information reported in September. It reported that SoftBank (TYO:9984) CEO Masayoshi Son had been involved in the conversation.

Altman's ouster was over a "breakdown of communications," not "malfeasance," Chief Operating Officer Brad Lightcap wrote in an internal company memo on Saturday that was viewed by Reuters.

Tech website The Verge earlier reported the OpenAI board's discussions with Altman to return as CEO. Forbes reported on Saturday investors were plotting to restore Altman as CEO.

Ousted OpenAI CEO Altman discusses possible return, mulls new AI venture-source
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.
  • Any comment you publish, together with your investing.com profile, will be public on investing.com and may be indexed and available through third party search engines, such as Google.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Comments (3)
Adrian White
Adrian White Nov 19, 2023 8:56AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
The spammers are back in full force.
Ali Attas
Ali Attas Nov 19, 2023 4:42AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Yaycks! AI cannot help here!
Rajesh Kumar
Rajesh Kumar Nov 19, 2023 3:17AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
AI company CEO lacked intelligence, he was dumb so he was removed by AI bot.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email