Microsoft has hired OpenAI co-founder and former chief executive Sam Altman just days after he was ousted from his company.

Mr Altman was fired on Friday, less than a year after launching the hugely successful AI chatbot ChatGPT, with OpenAI’s board saying it “no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI”.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was reportedly “furious” about being blindsided by Mr Altman’s firing, despite the tech giant being a key investor of the artificial intelligence firm.

On Monday, Mr Nadella announced that both Mr Altman and fellow OpenAI co-founder Greg Brockman would be joining his company.

“We’re extremely excited to share the news that Sam Altman and Greg Brockman, together with colleagues, will be joining Microsoft to lead a new advanced AI research team,” Mr Nadella wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

“We look forward to moving quickly to provide them with the resources needed for their success.”

Mr Altman replied to the post: “The mission continues.”

Mr Altman had previously posted a picture of himself wearing an OpenAI guest pass over the weekend, together with the caption: “First and last time I ever wear one of these.”

Mr Nadella followed up his original post on X with further details about what Mr Altman’s new role might be within the company.

“I’m super excited to have you join as CEO of this new group, Sam, setting a new pace for innovation,” he wrote.

“We’ve learned a lot over the years about how to give founders and innovators space to build independent identities and cultures within Microsoft, including GitHub, Mojang Studios, and LinkedIn, and I’m looking forward to having you do the same.”

Following Mr Altman’s dismissal, OpenAI chief technology officer Mira Murati was named interim CEO. OpenAI has now reportedly hired former Twitch chief executive Emmett Shear to lead the company.

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