ChatGPT's father Sam Altman was ousted by OpenAI's board then took a top job at Microsoft over the weekend. Here's how investors, analysts, and insiders reacted to the drama.

ChatGPT's father Sam Altman was ousted by OpenAI's board then took a top job at Microsoft over the weekend. Here's how investors, analysts, and insiders reacted to the drama.
Sam Altman.Drew Angerer, Getty images
  • Sam Altman was ousted from OpenAI then accepted a top job at Microsoft over the weekend.
  • Investors, Wall Street analysts, and industry insiders have weighed in on the drama.

Over the course of a whirlwind weekend, OpenAI cofounder Sam Altman was ousted from ChatGPT's parent company and promptly accepted a job running a new AI research team at Microsoft.

The dramatic course of events carries major implications for markets, as Microsoft is one of OpenAI's biggest investors, and excitement about AI has been a key driver of the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100's advances this year. OpenAI and Microsoft didn't immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.

Here's how investors, analysts, and insiders responded to news of the OpenAI fiasco. Their comments have been lightly edited for length and clarity:

1. Dan Ives, senior equity research analyst at Wedbush, to CGTN Europe

"This is a train-wreck situation because ultimately Altman is the face of AI, the golden child — that's really why Microsoft and others have invested."


2. Jason Ware, CIO of Albion Financial Group, to CNBC

"The reality is Microsoft's in a tough spot. They've spent well north of $10 billion investing in OpenAI. [Microsoft CEO Satya] Nadella says they're still committed to OpenAI. They're still in bed with OpenAI; at the same time it fees like they're trying to bring it in-house. (Ware predicted brain drain as other OpenAI employees follow Altman to Microsoft or join other rivals now he's no longer in charge.)

3. Ben Laidler, eToro analyst, in a morning email

"Microsoft investors appear to have reacted positively to the news that recently fired OpenAI CEO Sam Altman has joined the behemoth's ranks to front a new AI division, with the share price up 2.5%.

"The November 2022 launch of ChatGPT by OpenAI triggered what has arguably been the fastest consumer tech adoption in history. But Friday's shock firing of Altman shows that this has come with significant growing pains.


"It also put tech giant Microsoft in a difficult position, as the biggest backer and 49% shareholder of OpenAI, and the biggest beneficiary of its soaring valuation to a reported $86 billion.

"Microsoft opposed Altman's firing and will hope that he can add some stardust to their 'in-house' AI push, whilst the firm will also hope that new OpenAI CEO Emmett Shear can stabilize the AI-pioneer and the value of its investment."

4. Joshua Mahony, chief market analyst at Scope Markets, in a morning email

"Microsoft shares are expected to open over 2% higher after the firm swooped in to pick up Sam Altman to head up their advanced AI research team.

"Huge upheaval over the weekend saw the OpenAI CO-founder ousted from his role as CEO, raising concerns that he would spark a exodus of OpenAI staff to form a new ChatGPT competitor.


"Nonetheless, Microsoft have moved to secure their investment, with the decision to hire Altman helping minimize the chance of an OpenAI exodus, whilst also adding expertise for their massive AI operation."

5. Linxi "Jim" Fan, senior AI scientist at Nvidia, in a X post

"Somehow in this epic meltdown, Satya swoops in, wins it all, and wins with grace. I'm floored. OpenAI was invincible until Friday.

"Now Microsoft will fully own an in-house GPT-4 in ~9 months, leverage its massive distribution power to spin the biggest data flywheel ever, collect huge profits, and scale the most powerful intelligence on Azure - while doing all this without any non-profit governance whatsoever.

"I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that the course of humanity changed abruptly and fundamentally on 11/20/23. Not at all what the coup intended? Right, Clippy?"


6. Jason Calacanis, venture capitalist and podcast host, in a X post

"The entire poker table has been tossed over … chips, drinks, cards, players strewn everywhere — complete chaos. It's anyone's game now. This implosion will be great for the industry… it's on!"