May 28, 2024

Microsoft Invests USD 1.5Bn In G42 To Boost AI Development

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This strategic investment will enhance the UAE's position as a global AI hub and provide further opportunities for partners and customers to innovate and grow
From left to right: Brad Smith, Vice Chair and President of Microsoft; HH Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of G42; Peng Xiao, Group Chief Executive Officer of G42. Image courtesy: G42

G42, the leading UAE-based artificial intelligence (AI) technology holding company, and Microsoft recently announced a $1.5 billion strategic investment by Microsoft in G42. This investment will boost the two firms’ collaboration on bringing the latest Microsoft AI technologies and skilling initiatives to the UAE and other countries around the world. As part of this expanded partnership Brad Smith, Vice Chair and President of Microsoft, will join the G42 Board of Directors. 

Industry sources further added that this expanded partnership boosts organizations of all sizes in the latest diverse markets to harness the benefits of AI and the cloud while ensuring they adopt AI that adheres to world-leading standards in safety and security.

H.H. Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of G42

H.H. Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of G42, stated: “Microsoft’s investment in G42 marks a pivotal moment in our company’s journey of growth and innovation, signifying a strategic alignment of vision and execution between the two organizations. This partnership is a testament to the shared values and aspirations for progress, fostering greater cooperation and synergy globally.”  

Brad Smith, Microsoft Vice Chair and President stated “Our two companies will work together not only in the UAE, but to bring AI and digital infrastructure and services to underserved nations. We will combine world-class technology with world-leading standards for safe, trusted, and responsible AI, in close coordination with the governments of both the UAE and the United States.”  

Peng Xiao, Group Chief Executive Officer of G42, stated: “Through Microsoft’s strategic investment, we are advancing our mission to deliver cutting-edge AI technologies at scale. This partnership significantly enhances our international market presence, combining G42’s unique AI capabilities with Microsoft’s robust global infrastructure. Together, we are not only expanding our operational horizons but also setting new industry standards for innovation.” 

Samer Abu-Ltaif, Microsoft Corporate Vice President and President, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa

Samer Abu-Ltaif, Microsoft Corporate Vice President and President, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, added: “Our investment in G42 stands as a testament to the thriving and dynamic tech landscape in the UAE and the broader region. This strategic partnership is well-positioned to ignite opportunities for our customers and partners, accelerate innovation, and fuel economic growth. With G42, we will introduce cutting-edge technologies that will empower countries and markets to advance their digital agendas by harnessing the power of Cloud and AI.” 

Industry sources confirmed that building on the two organizations’ long-standing collaboration in AI and digital transformation initiatives, Microsoft’s investment deepens the reciprocal commitment to this strategic partnership.

G42 will run its AI applications and services on Microsoft Azure and partner to deliver advanced AI solutions to global public sector clients and large enterprises. G42 and Microsoft will also work together to bring advanced AI and digital infrastructure to countries in the Middle East, Central Asia, and Africa, providing these nations with equitable access to services to address important governmental and business concerns while ensuring the highest standards of security and privacy.  

Industry sources added that this partnership will also aid in the development of skilled and diverse AI workforce and talent pool that will drive innovation and competitiveness for the UAE and broader region with the investment of $1B in a development fund for developers.   

The commercial partnership is backed by assurances to both governments through a first of its kind agreement to apply world-class best practices to ensure the secure, trusted, and responsible development and deployment of AI. Microsoft and G42 will work closely and elevate the security and compliance framework of their joint international infrastructure. 

Industry sources added further that both firms will move forward with a commitment to comply with US and international trade, security, responsible AI, and business integrity laws and regulations. The work on these topics is governed by a detailed Intergovernmental Assurance Agreement (IGAA) between G42 and Microsoft that was developed in close consultation with both the UAE and US governments. 

In September 2023, the firms entered into an agreement to introduce sovereign cloud offerings and collaborate on unlocking the potential of advanced AI capabilities on the Azure public cloud platform. Lastly, in November 2023, Microsoft announced the availability of G42’s Jais Arabic Large Language Model on the new Azure AI Cloud Model-as-a-Service offering. 

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