After a sudden removal, Sam Altman, co-founder and former CEO of OpenAI, has taken up the position of head of artificial intelligence research at Microsoft. Joining him are Greg Brockman, former President of OpenAI, and several other staff members. These changes occur less than a year after OpenAI sparked the generative AI craze with the introduction of the popular chatbot ChatGPT and secured investments from major players like Microsoft.
Almost all of OpenAI’s staff have threatened to resign unless the board steps down and appoints two new senior independent directors in addition to bringing back Altman and Brockman, according to the Reuters letter.
November 17: OpenAI’s board fired CEO, co-founder Sam Altman, and president Greg Brockman resigned from the board. The company appoints Mira Murat as temporary CEO
Nov. 18: Altman’s firing was due to a “breakdown in communication between Sam and the board” and not “fraud,” chief operating officer Brad Lightcap says in a Nov. 18 internal memo. Early investor Khosla Ventures says it wants Altman back at OpenAI, “but supports him in whatever he does next”
Nov. 18: Some employees considered quitting if Altman was not reinstated as CEO by the end of the weekend, while others expressed support for him joining the new company, people familiar with the matter said
Nov 19: Altman discusses possible return to company, considering new AI launch, source tells Reuters Nov 20 Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says the Windows maker has hired Altman, Brockman and their colleagues to lead a new advanced AI research group
November 20: OpenAI appoints former Twitch boss Emmett Shear as interim CEO. Shear promises to investigate Altman’s exit. OpenAI’s board is approaching rival Anthropic’s CEO about a merger for the top job, sources say
November 20: Almost all OpenAI staff threaten to quit and join Altman at Microsoft if the board does not resign, Reuters reports.
Nov 20 Some OpenAI investors are exploring legal action against the company’s board, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters,