OpenAI names Twitch cofounder Emmett Shear new interim CEO after reports that ousted Sam Altman could return

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OpenAI co-founder and board director Ilya Sutskever told staff Sunday night that Emmett Shear, co-founder of video streaming site Twitch, will take over as interim CEO, the Information reported, and that Sam Altman would not be returning to the CEO role he was ousted from Friday.

Altman was fired from the $29 billion startup he cofounded after the company claimed Altman “was not consistently candid” with the board, but did not provide specific details. OpenAI also stripped co-founder and president Greg Brockman of his chairman title as part of the leadership change, though the company said he would remain in his operational role. Brockman quit hours later, seemingly in support of Altman.

Minutes before The Information's report on Sunday, Bloomberg had reported that OpenAI's previous interim CEO Mira Murati, who had immediately replaced Altman, was working to re-hire Altman and Brockman. That discussion seemed to fall apart, multiple outlets have reported. Bloomberg's Emily Chang posted that Altman "is in shock."

The stunning turn of events follows reports that Microsoft, which has invested $13 billion in OpenAI, was working to reinstate Altman and Brockman, alongside other investors Thrive Capital, Sequoia Capital, and Tiger Global. Microsoft shares dipped 1.7% following the announcement on Friday, wiping out nearly $47 billion in market value.

Microsoft wields enormous power over OpenAI, despite not holding a seat on OpenAI's board. Microsoft has reportedly delivered only a fraction of the cash it's promised OpenAI so far, and the Redmond-based giant provides the cloud computing data centers where OpenAI trains and runs its models.

This is a developing story, please check back later for updates.

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