Sam Altman will not return as CEO of OpenAI, despite efforts by company executives to bring him back, according to co-founder and CEO Ilya Sutskever. After a weekend of negotiations with the board that fired him on Friday, as well as the rest of its leaders and major investors, Altman will not return to the startup he co-founded in 2015, Sutskever told employees. Emmett Sherr, co-founder of the Amazon-owned video streaming site Twitch, will serve as interim CEO, Sutskever said.
The decision — which came in the face of comments OpenAI executives shared with employees on Saturday and early Sunday — could deepen the crisis precipitated by the board’s abrupt ouster of Altman and the removal of Chairman Greg Brockman from the board on Friday. Brockman, a key architect behind the company’s successes, resigned later that day, followed by three senior researchers, threatening to trigger a broader wave of departures to OpenAI’s competitors, including Google, and to a new project Altman had been planning in the wake of his firing. .
Stunned employees exited OpenAI’s San Francisco headquarters shortly after 9 p.m., shortly after the decision was announced internally. One person who has left the office appears to be research chief Bob McGraw, who was one of several executives working to bring back Altman and Brockman.
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