Home BUSINESS Sam Altman To Return As OpenAI CEO. Here’s How He Reacted

Sam Altman To Return As OpenAI CEO. Here’s How He Reacted

Sam Altman To Return As OpenAI CEO. Here’s How He Reacted


In what is turning out to be a glorified game of pass-the-parcel, Sam Altman is now confirmed to return to OpenAI as the CEO. Over the weekend, Altman was asked to leave the Microsoft-backed artificial intelligence (AI) research firm after the board reportedly lost “confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI”. After rumours surfaced of Mira Murati or Emmett Shear stepping up as the interim CEO, OpenAI has now confirmed that Alman will indeed return in the top role as the company has “reached an agreement in principle”.

Here’s what OpenAI tweeted on Wednesday morning: 

Altman soon followed up with his own tweet, saying that he is “looking forward to returning to OpenAI” and to build on the company’s relationship with Microsoft.

Sam Altman’s Exit From OpenAI, And Return: A Quick Timeline

In a statement earlier on Saturday, OpenAI’s board said that Altman’s departure “follows a deliberative review process,” which concluded “he was not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities,” as reported by news agency AFP. “The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI,” it added. Some reports also suggested that Microsoft is in discussions with OpenAI and other stakeholders to reach an amicable solution. 

A couple of days after the exit, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella tweeted that Altman had officially joined Microsoft. Nadella expressed Microsoft’s unwavering commitment to its collaboration with OpenAI, emphasising confidence in its product roadmap and the ability to sustain innovation, as previously unveiled at Microsoft Ignite.

On Monday, Altman even tweeted a cryptic image of him wearing a Guest ID card at the OpenAI office. “First and last time I ever wear one of these,” he posted. While some thought this meant a final goodbye to OpenAI, some are now speculating that Altman was in talks for a return to the company as he said this is the last time he would wear an OpenAI Guest ID card.

Now, it seems that OpenAI and Altman have apparently put their differences aside. The new OpenAI board will now comprise Bret Taylor as the Chair, Larry Summers, and Adam D’Angelo. As Altman explained in his tweet, he did join Microsoft on Sunday, and now has a new board and Nadella’s support to back him up. 

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Nadella shared an official statement as well. Here’s what he said: “We are encouraged by the changes to the OpenAI board. We believe this is a first essential step on a path to more stable, well-informed, and effective governance. Sam, Greg, and I have talked and agreed they have a key role to play along with the OAI leadership team in ensuring OAI continues to thrive and build on its mission. We look forward to building on our strong partnership and delivering the value of this next generation of AI to our customers and partners.”

It remains to be seen what OpenAI has planned for next.


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