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Microsoft May Back ChatGPT Creator With $10 Billion Investment

If the deal goes through, it could increase Microsoft's stake in the buzzy company.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and OpenAI CEO Sam Altman at the Microsoft campus
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and OpenAI CEO Sam Altman at the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Washington, on July 15, 2019. 
Scott Eklund/Red Box Pictures

Microsoft is in talks to invest a further $10 billion into OpenAI, creator of the wildly popular ChatGPT chatbot, according to a Semafor report published Tuesday.

The report, which cites people familiar with the matter, says the proposal currently calls for Microsoft to inject money over multiple years. If the deal goes through, it is expected to value OpenAI, an AI research lab co-founded by Elon Musk and Sam Altman among others, at $29 billion.

The deal would potentially increase Microsoft's stake to 49%, according to Semafor, and also has a clause entitling the Seattle-based tech giant to 75% of OpenAI's profits until the investment is recovered. Microsoft backed the AI research company in 2019 with a $1 billion investment in cash and cloud credits.

Read More: Why Everyone's Obsessed with ChatGPT, a Mind-Blowing AI Chatbot

Microsoft is reportedly working to launch a version of its Bing search engine that is powered by the AI tech used in ChatGPT before the end of March, as it seeks to edge out Google.

ChatGPT, an AI-powered chatbot, drew mainstream attention last year for its ability to answer questions via text in a human-like manner based on written prompts and carry on a conversation. It offers answers (even poetry) that are more sophisticated and creative than those from previous Silicon Valley chatbots.

Read More: ChatGPT is a Stunning AI, but Human Jobs Are Safe (for Now)

Microsoft declined to comment. OpenAI didn't reply to a request for comment.

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