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Microsoft invests $1.5 billion in artificial intelligence company in UAE

This significant initiative underscores the growing interest in AI technology in the UAE region and the potential it brings for developing innovative solutions.

Date: 2024-04-17 Author: Marek Stiller
Microsoft invests $1.5 billion in artificial intelligence company in UAE

As announced on April 16, Microsoft has invested $1.5 billion in G42, an artificial intelligence (AI) company based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This was part of Microsoft’s AI investment plans to expand and strengthen its position in the artificial intelligence industry.

Microsoft announced its latest investment in artificial intelligence in an official press release, noting that the company is gaining a minority stake in G42. In addition, Microsoft Vice President Brad Smith will join G42’s board of directors.

In return, G42 will use Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform to power its AI services and applications to improve the safety and security of its infrastructure.

The cooperation will also extend advanced artificial intelligence and digital infrastructure to countries in the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa to provide access to services for government and business needs, while maintaining the highest standards of security and privacy.

According to Smith, the new partnership is part of a concerted effort to bring the artificial intelligence industry and digital infrastructure to “underserved countries.”

G42 Chairman H.H. Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan also expressed excitement and noted the potential growth of the new partnership.

“Microsoft’s investment in G42 is a key moment in our company’s path of growth and innovation, signifying the strategic alignment of the two organizations’ vision and execution.” – he explained. “This partnership is a testament to our shared values and aspirations for progress, fostering greater collaboration and synergy around the world.”

In addition, Microsoft revealed that the partnership will support the development of a skilled and diverse artificial intelligence workforce, investing $1 billion in a development fund for developers, driving innovation and competitiveness in the UAE and across the region.

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The partnership comes a few months after UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan established an artificial intelligence council to promote research and investment in the field in the country.

The inclusion of “the governments of the United States and the United Arab Emirates,” the press release said, however, prompted comments from some in the artificial intelligence industry and artificial intelligence experts, as it came after months of scrutiny of G42 for its alleged ties to China.

on January 9, Member of the House of Representatives Mike Gallagher, chairman of the U.S. Special Committee on the Communist Party of China, sent a letter to Gina Raimondo, Secretary of the Department of Commerce, to thoroughly investigate G42 for potential trade and export blacklisting.

Gallagher’s concerns stemmed from allegations that G42 has relationships with blacklisted Chinese companies, such as Huawei, and cooperates with China’s military and intelligence services.

Insights into Microsoft’s investments

Microsoft’s recent partnership with G42 is part of a series of multi-billion dollar investments in the global artificial intelligence industry. Microsoft AI CEO Mustafa Suleyman announced on April 9 a long-term investment to hire innovators in the UK, for example.

At an event in Berlin, the company pledged €3.2 billion ($3.44 billion) to develop artificial intelligence infrastructure in Germany over the next two years. Shortly thereafter, Microsoft unveiled its plan to invest $2.1 billion to develop artificial intelligence infrastructure in Spain in order to boost local capacity for the technology.

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has raised concerns about the growth of the artificial intelligence industry and how partnerships in the sector could potentially stifle competition.

The CMA highlighted the dominant presence of tech giants such as Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Meta and Apple in various aspects of the artificial intelligence chain, including computing, data and model development.

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Marek Stiller
Marek Stiller
Founder of the "Cryptocurrency for Beginners" channel on YouTube. He collaborates with Łukasz to form the Arena Trading group, while at the same time being passionate about blockchain technology. His knowledge and experience in the cryptocurrency industry help beginner investors better understand this dynamic market.
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