OpenAI’s Sam Altman Is Ready for His Second Act at Microsoft

Not an immediate win for Microsoft

Microsoft still has its work cut out for it to change consumer sentiment about AI.

Gartner research found that 82% of consumers are concerned there’ll be no net benefits to society from gen AI. Conversely, 56% of marketing leaders see a greater reward than risk with gen AI.

“Any short-term advantage, or disadvantage, to [Microsoft] will likely be muted until a shift in consumer behavior takes hold,” said Levy.

Meanwhile, if Microsoft remains steady in building its AI capabilities for both its commercial partners and consumers, it could find an opportunity for business growth, according to Greene.

The end of OpenAI?

Following Altman’s departure, OpenAI quickly hired a new interim CEO. In his first order of business, Emmett Shear, former CEO of Twitch, said he plan to enlist an independent investigator to look into the C-suite drama at OpenAI.

“It’s clear that the process and communications around Sam’s removal has been handled very badly, which has seriously damaged our trust,” Shear wrote on X.

Elsewhere, in a letter addressed to the OpenAI board, more than 500 employees have called for the resignations of the three independent board members.

OpenAI had been considering a new funding round with the goal of raising an estimated total of $100 billion, per The Information.

“This seems improbable now, with potential funding at a reduced valuation. Investor confidence may also waver due to the board’s dominant role, evidenced by Altman’s dismissal,” said Chris Harihar, evp of Mod Op-owned Crenshaw Communications. “For ChatGPT, this means likely reduced resources, potentially impacting the maintenance of its capital-intensive infrastructure.”

The headspinning nature of the changes might not be over. Sources are telling The Verge that Altman, who co-founded OpenAI, would be willing to return as CEO under the right circumstances. Given that Microsoft is already the largest shareholder in OpenAI, the return would be smoother, with a lot less drama, than the departure.

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