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Microsoft Taps DeepMind Co-Founder to Lead New AI Division

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Microsoft has appointed Mustafa Suleyman, the co-founder of DeepMind, to spearhead a new AI division within the company.

Suleyman, who co-founded DeepMind in 2010 alongside Demis Hassabis and Shane Legg, brings a wealth of experience in the field of artificial intelligence.

Under Suleyman’s leadership, DeepMind gained recognition for its groundbreaking AI research and was eventually acquired by Google in 2014. Following the merger with another unit, DeepMind became a cornerstone of Google’s AI initiatives.

In a blog post, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella announced Suleyman’s appointment, emphasizing his visionary leadership and track record as a founder and builder of pioneering AI teams. The new division, named Microsoft AI, will focus on advancing the company’s consumer products and research endeavors.

Suleyman’s startup, Inflection AI, will also contribute talent to the new division. This move comes as Microsoft seeks to bolster its position in generative AI, an area where it has made significant investments through collaborations with organizations like OpenAI, the developer behind ChatGPT.

Nadella expressed confidence in Suleyman’s ability to drive Microsoft’s AI efforts forward, highlighting the potential for accelerated innovation with the infusion of new talent from Inflection AI. Karen Simonyan, another co-founder of Inflection AI, will join the new unit as chief scientist.

Meanwhile, Google is expanding its AI initiatives, with reports suggesting that Apple is in talks to integrate Google’s Gemini AI product into the iPhone. Suleyman’s Inflection AI has also made waves in the AI landscape, attracting significant investments and attention for its contributions to the field.

Suleyman, who has a diverse background with roots in north London, has been vocal about the potential benefits and challenges of AI. His book, “The Coming Wave,” explores the transformative impact of AI while urging for increased focus on AI safety research to mitigate potential risks.

In an interview last year, Suleyman described his book as a “provocation,” emphasizing the importance of proactive intervention to shape the future trajectory of AI technology. With his appointment at Microsoft, Suleyman is poised to continue driving innovation and shaping the future of AI.