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Sam Altman Steps Down from OpenAI Startup Fund, Ian Hathaway Appointed as New Leader

OpenAI's venture capital arm has a new leader: Ian Hathaway. He replaces Sam Altman as CEO of the OpenAI Startup Fund.


The OpenAI Startup Fund, a venture capital entity associated with , has undergone a significant change in its leadership structure. In a move announced through a filing with the SEC on March 29, Sam Altman has been replaced as the owner and controller of the fund. Ian Hathaway, who has been instrumental in managing the fund since its inception in 2021, has been appointed to take over the leadership role. This development aims to provide clarity and address the unique structural setup that initially placed Altman at the helm of the fund.

Structural Uniqueness and Strategic Shift

The OpenAI Startup Fund, despite bearing the OpenAI name, was not owned by OpenAI but was instead legally owned by . This setup, which also includes outside limited partners such as Microsoft, was described as unusual for a corporate venture capital fund but not without precedent. OpenAI had previously stated that the decision to place the fund under Altman's name was a temporary measure intended to expedite the fund's launch. The recent leadership transition to Ian Hathaway is a move that reinforces this stance, aiming to streamline the fund's operations and strategic direction.

Ian Hathaway's New Role and Expertise

Ian Hathaway, the new head of the OpenAI Startup Fund, brings a wealth of experience to his new position. Having run the fund's accelerator program and led investments in various , including Harvey, Cursor, and Ambience , Hathaway is seemingly well-equipped to steer the fund towards continued success. His expertise in managing investments and nurturing startup growth is expected to be invaluable as the fund seeks to support innovative companies in the tech sector.

In conclusion, the leadership change at the OpenAI Startup Fund marks a significant milestone in the fund's journey. By appointing Ian Hathaway as the new leader, the fund aims to leverage his extensive experience and insights to foster innovation and drive growth within the startup ecosystem. This strategic shift also addresses the previous structural concerns and sets the stage for the fund's future endeavors.

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.

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