American technology company Microsoft has announced a multi-billion dollar investment in artificial intelligence company OpenAI, which is also behind ChatGPT.
The tech company said the investment is aimed at advancing breakthroughs in artificial intelligence to ensure benefits spread across the world. While Microsoft did not specify the amount of investment in OpenAI, Semafor said earlier this month that the deal was valued at $10 billion.
Microsoft’s latest investment in the AI company follows two previous financial commitments. The first two investments were made in 2019 and 2021, respectively. In July 2019, Microsoft backed OpenAI with $1 billion, making the tech company the AI company’s exclusive cloud computing service provider. The agreement will continue in accordance with the last agreement.
Explaining the OpenAI partnership plan, Microsoft said it will continue to evolve its Azure cloud computing platform to enable customers to use AI applications at a broader level. The tech company will also use OpenAI technology to drive new categories of digital experiences. She also mentioned the Microsoft Azure OpenAI service, which allows developers to build advanced AI applications with direct access to OpenAI models. At the same time, Azure will support all OpenAI workloads as the exclusive cloud service provider for the AI company. Microsoft CEO and President Satya Nadella commented on the relationship with OpenAI:
“We formed our partnership with OpenAI on the basis of a shared commitment to responsibly promote cutting-edge AI research and democratize AI as a new technology platform. With this new phase of our partnership, developers and organizations across all industries will have access to the best AI infrastructure, templates and toolset with Azure to build and run their applications.”
Microsoft has worked hard to turn Azure into an AI supercomputer, mainly through investments in OpenAI over the years. The joint venture unveiled its first top-five supercomputer in 2020 and went further in building multiple AI supercomputing systems. In addition, OpenAI has deployed platforms for its models used in Azure to support AI products.
Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI also said:
“The last three years of our partnership have been great. Microsoft shares our values, and we’re excited to continue our independent research and work to create cutting-edge AI that benefits everyone.”
At press time, Microsoft shares were up 0.04% to $242.66 in premarket trading. This came after the company closed down 0.98% at $242.58. Aside from a jump of 2.37% last month and just over 1% YTD, MSFT has continued to decline over the past year.