OpenAI to not grant board seats to Microsoft, other backers

Microsoft spokesperson says they will wait until OpenAI officially announces the final verdict
OpenAI logo is seen in this illustration taken March 31, 2023. — Reuters
OpenAI logo is seen in this illustration taken March 31, 2023. — Reuters

OpenAI, the developer behind ChatGPT, is not expected to accommodate on its new board Microsoft and its other backers including Khosla Ventures and Thrive Capital.

Among a series of events that wreaked havoc, OpenAI dismissed Sam Altman, its CEO and founder without providing specific reasons.

As his departure brought uncertainty regarding the future of the firm, he was subsequently reinstated with the promise of forming a new board.

Thomas Hayes, chairman of Great Hill Capital, said "I do not know that it's going to be the choice of OpenAI to leave Microsoft off the board."

"Microsoft will have something to say about it, given the amount of money that they have put behind them," he remarked, adding that it would not be in the interest of Microsoft "to sit passively".

OpenAI will have a nine-person board, Reuters cited a report first published by The Information.

The report indicates that the confirmation of the new board's three initial directors —Chair Bret Taylor, former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, and Quora CEO Adam D'Angelo— is expected to take place as early as this week.

D'Angelo would be the only director retained from the previous six-person board that ousted Altman.

Microsoft, a major supporter of OpenAI with an investment of over $10 billion, emphasised the necessity for a change in governance at OpenAI irrespective of Altman's future position.

The same narrative was previously conveyed to CNBC by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

Addressing a question on the OpenAI board, a Microsoft spokesperson said, "We will wait until the board officially says something."