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Microsoft’s OpenAI Ties Face Potential UK Antitrust Probe

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Microsoft's (MSFT) OpenAI Investment Risks Scrutiny from FTC, UK's CMA -  Bloomberg
  1. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is conducting a review to determine if Microsoft’s partnership with OpenAI constitutes an “acquisition of control.” This marks the second time in the year that the CMA has delved into competition issues regarding Microsoft.
  2. The review aims to analyze whether the Microsoft/OpenAI partnership, including recent developments, has created a relevant merger situation and the potential impact on competition in the AI technology sector.
  3. Microsoft has committed to investing over $10 billion in OpenAI and holds a 49% stake in the for-profit operating company. A recent announcement revealed Microsoft’s move to a non-voting position on OpenAI’s board.
  4. Brad Smith, Microsoft’s vice-chair and president, emphasized that Microsoft’s role as a non-voting observer is distinct from an acquisition, unlike Google’s purchase of DeepMind. He affirmed collaboration with the CMA.
  5. Antitrust experts stress the necessity of investigating AI deals swiftly to preserve competition and prevent monopolization. The CMA will evaluate governance changes post the Altman affair and monitor Microsoft’s influence over OpenAI.
SourceBloomberg

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