Microsoft, which has invested a large amount in OpenAI capital, announced yesterday that it would hire Sam Altman and Greg Brockman, who left the startup’s leadership, as employees. However, the rebellion of OpenAI employees and the defection of the coup initiator Ilya Sutskever to their side do not allow us to consider the question of the former CEO’s return to the company as settled. Even the head of Microsoft has no objection to this development.
The group’s CEO, Satya Nadella, hinted at this in his interviews CNBC And Bloombergas explained TechCrunch: “Of course we want Sam and Greg to have a fantastic new home in case they don’t want to be in it OpenAI”. When asked about the possibility of Altman returning to OpenAI, Nadella said it would be decided by the company’s board, management and employees. Microsoft will work closely with OpenAI and employees of this company can decide for themselves where they want to work (at OpenAI or Microsoft), so Nadella is open to both options.
Of the current OpenAI board, only two members oppose Altman’s return to the post of CEO, as the company’s scientific director Ilya Sutskever yesterday expressed solidarity with the overwhelming majority (more than 90%) of the team who demanded it the board of directors return Altman to the company.
At the same time, Nadella admitted that Microsoft wants reforms in OpenAI’s management structure, as the existing mechanisms do not protect its interests as a major investor. The company’s employees are not yet ready to accept as an executive the recently appointed Emmett Shear, whose candidacy was proposed by the OpenAI board. In this environment, Sam Altman’s return to the CEO position doesn’t seem too unlikely. At the same time, Shire announced his willingness to begin his work as head of OpenAI by conducting an independent investigation into the reasons for Altman’s resignation and publishing the results.