Two sources briefed on the situation claim that the board of directors of OpenAI approached the CEO of competitor business Anthropic about removing head Sam Altman and maybe integrating the two AI startups.
According to the people, Anthropic CEO Dario Amodei refused on both fronts.
The Information first broke the story on Monday. It comes days after Altman was fired by the OpenAI board and comes after several reports that calls were made to identify his replacement.
Board member Adam D’Angelo did not immediately reply to a request for comment, and OpenAI declined to comment.
Emmett Shear, the former CEO of Twitch, accepted the board’s invitation to serve as its acting CEO on Sunday. In the meantime, Altman consented to join Microsoft, a startup’s sponsor, along with other important OpenAI employees. By Monday, almost every one of the startup’s 700+ staff members—including one executive on the now-four-person board of OpenAI—had vowed to resign.
The co-founders of Anthropic, who remained executives at OpenAI until 2020, had left their company due to differences in their ideas on how to guarantee the safe advancement and regulation of AI.
Amazon.com and Google, two brands owned by Alphabet, have invested in Anthropic. Its Claude AI models have competed with OpenAI’s GPT series for prominence.
Recently, in an unexpected change of events that cast doubt on the future of the business at the centre of the artificial intelligence boom, OpenAI recruited former Twitch executive Emmett Shear as interim CEO, while exiting chief Sam Altman moved to backer Microsoft.
After Altman was abruptly fired as CEO of ChatGPT a few days prior, the appointments, which were finalised late on Sunday, put a stop to rumours that he might return.
A few hours later, Altman and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella attempted to allay speculation that OpenAI would fail. Altman stated on X that he is “committed to fully providing continuity of operations” and that his major goal “remains to ensure OpenAI continues to thrive”.
In an interview with CNBC, Nadella stated he had no problem with employees joining Microsoft or staying at OpenAI. No matter where Altman ended up, he argued, the ChatGPT maker’s governance needed to be altered.