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Satya Nadella Says He’s OK With Sam Altman Joining Back OpenAI Instead of Microsoft

A day after Microsoft announced that Sam Altman and Greg Brockman are joining Microsoft’s AI research team, Satya Nadella signaled that he’s ok with Altman joining back OpenAI.

Microsoft CEO on Sam Altman’s Next Move

Whether Altman opts to join Microsoft or returns to OpenAI, as some investors have been attempting to facilitate, he will collaborate with Microsoft, confirmed Nadella in an interview with Bloomberg Television. As the primary supporter of OpenAI, the startup from which Altman was recently removed as CEO, Microsoft remains connected with him.

Nadella said that “Irrespective of where Sam is, he’s working with Microsoft”. In a surprising turn of events within the OpenAI narrative, Nadella revealed on Sunday that he is bringing Altman on board to lead a new artificial intelligence group at Microsoft. Altman’s abrupt dismissal from OpenAI on Friday had sent shockwaves through Silicon Valley, leading investors in the startup to advocate for his reinstatement.

Within a short span, the majority of OpenAI’s employees expressed their intent to resign and join Altman at Microsoft unless the current board stepped down.

No Wrongdoing By Altman

Nadella clarified that he has not been informed of any wrongdoing by Altman during his tenure at OpenAI. “I remain confident in Sam and his leadership and capability, and that’s why we want to welcome him to Microsoft,” he stated in the interview.

The Microsoft CEO also said that “Surprises are bad, and we just want to make sure things are done in a way that will allow us to partner well”. Nadella stated that he has not been informed of the reasons behind Altman’s termination, mentioning, “I’ve not been told about anything. The board has not discussed anything that Sam did other than some breakdown in communications”.

He added that major changes happening without Microsoft in the loop “is not good, and we will definitely ensure that some of the changes that are needed, happen.”

Commenting on yesterday’s developments, Sam Altman wrote: “Satya and my top priority remain to ensure OpenAI continues to thrive we are committed to fully providing continuity of operations to our partners and customers. The OpenAI/Microsoft partnership also makes this very doable”.

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