Google invests $300M in AI firm previously funded by Sam Bankman-Fried
Google Cloud has reportedly invested $300 million into artificial intelligence (AI) startup firm Anthropic, which also happened to receive over $500 million in funds from former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried about six months before FTX catastrophically collapsed.
While the $300 million figure was reported by Financial Times on Feb. 4, Anthropic confirmed the investment partnership with Google Cloud on the same day despite not disclosing any figures:
We’re excited to use Google Cloud to train our AI systems, including Claude! https://t.co/IaqQ5lpJrP https://t.co/vOn5Cj4sPt
— Anthropic (@AnthropicAI) February 3, 2023
In the same announcement, Anthropic also confirmed that they previously raised capital from Bankman-Fried and former Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison, among others, in its Series B fundraising round:
The Series B round was led by Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX. The round also included participation from Caroline Ellison, Jim McClave, Nishad Singh, Jaan Tallinn, and the Center for Emerging Risk Research (CERR).
The fundraising efforts led by Bankman-Fried took place in April, 2022, according to Crunchbase.
A recent post by The New York Times reported that of the $580 million raised, about $530 million came from Bankman-Fried and his former business partners.
But some believe the figure to be even higher too.
One FTX creditor believes Bankman-Fried’s stake in the AI company could be as high as $1.1 billion. However, the creditor didn’t elaborate on the figure.
Other members of the Crypto Twitter community are also speculating whether Bankman-Fried’s stake will be used to pay off the massive pile of debt that FTX has accumulated from their recent controversies.
As for the partnership, Anthropic will now utilize Google Cloud’s GPU and TPU clusters to train, expand, and implement its AI chatbox, called “Claude” — similar to that of OpenAI’s ChatGTP.
Google Cloud received about a 10% stake in Anthropic, according to Financial Times.
While it remains to be seen where the bulk of the debt in the FTX bankruptcy case will be sourced from, Bankman-Fried personally pleaded not guiltty to all eight fraud and conspiracy-based charges laid against him on Jan. 3.
Bankman-Fried currently remains under house arrest at his parent’s California home until his trial date, which is set for Oct. 2, 2023.