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Report: OpenAI Could Become a For-Profit Business

OpenAI’s days as a nonprofit company could be numbered.

CEO Sam Altman has told some shareholders the artificial intelligence (AI) firm is weighing a change to its governance, making it a for-profit company that its nonprofit board has no control over, The Information reported Friday (June 14).

The report — citing a person who heard Altman discuss the plans with the shareholders — said that among the scenarios the company is considering is a for-profit benefit corporation, also used by fellow AI companies Anthropic and xAI.

The report added that this move could set the stage for an eventual initial public offering (IPO) for OpenAI, valued at $86 billion, and might give Altman the chance to take a stake in the company, something which investors have been advocating.

PYMNTS has contacted OpenAI for comment but has not yet gotten a reply. Last week saw reports that the company had doubled its annualized revenue in the last six months.

Also last week, OpenAI said it was expanding its lobbying department as the AI sector faces more regulatory oversight, with the goal of having a 50-person global affairs department, up from 35 currently and three last year.

“We are not approaching this from a perspective of we just need to get in there and quash regulations … because we don’t have a goal of maximizing profit; we have a goal of making sure that AGI benefits all of humanity,” Anna Makanju, OpenAI’s vice president of government affairs told the Financial Times, in reference to artificial general intelligence, a type of AI that can think and reason on the level — or above the level — of humans.

Meanwhile, the company is teaming with Apple as the iPhone maker begins to incorporate AI into its devices, in a collaboration aimed at giving Apple’s digital assistant Siri and its writing tools a shot in the arm with advanced AI capabilities.

“While Apple could have used its own AI capabilities, the company realized that its customers may want to use other AI solutions, including those that Apple itself deems industry-leading, like OpenAI’s,” PYMNTS wrote last week.

“This fundamental fork in the road is the very same dilemma that many traditional financial institutions and payments players are facing as they look to balance their legacy cores with the seamless, technology-driven experiences their most valuable end-users have come to expect.”

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