Google to invest up to $2bn in AI company Anthropic, which is currently being sued for copyright infringement by Universal Music Group

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Google has committed to invest up to $2 billion in artificial intelligence unicorn Anthropic, which last month also secured a multi-billion dollar investment from Amazon.

Alphabet-owned Google had already invested $500 million in Anthropic earlier this year, and now plans to pump in another $1.5 billion over time, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday (October 27), citing people familiar with the matter.

Anthropic also reportedly secured a multiyear deal with Google Cloud worth more than $3 billion, which according to the WSJ, was signed before the new investment from Google.

The news of Google’s investment was also reported by Reuters over the weekend, citing confirmation from an Anthropic spokesperson.

Anthropic’s flagship product, Claude is a challenger to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. The startup was established by OpenAI engineers in 2021 with an aim to develop rival generative AI models.

News of Google’s investment in Anthropic follows the news of a lawsuit filed against Anthropic this month by Universal Music Publishing Group, Concord Music Group and ABKCO for the alleged “systematic and widespread infringement of their copyrighted song lyrics.”

Anthropic’s latest capital injection arrives at a time when tech giants continue to bet big on startups that develop new AI models.

Microsoft in January deepened its partnership with ChatGPT developer OpenAI, committing another $10 billion for a 49% stake in the company. As part of that deal, OpenAI has committed to use Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform for the training of its AI models.

Anthropic’s founders, led by siblings Dario and Daniela Amodei, left OpenAI two years ago amid a disagreement over the safe development of AI. Since then, Anthropic has competed with OpenAI for critical training resources and backing from investors.

The WSJ noted that two-year-old Anthropic has so far amassed nearly $7 billion in funding over the past year with the recent deals with Amazon and Google. Additionally, Anthropic has secured large-scale agreements with Amazon and Google for the training and operation of its AI models.

The startup also received a $500 million investment from Sam Bankman-Fried, the tech entrepreneur who is currently on trial for fraud in New York in relation to the collapse of the FTX crypto platform.

In addition to Anthropic, Google has also made substantial investments in other AI startups such as Runway, a developer of video production tools, and Hugging Face, an open-source software service. Google has also dedicated substantial resources to developing proprietary AI systems, including the yet-to-be-released algorithm known as Gemini, poised to rival the technology underpinning ChatGPT.

Music Business Worldwide

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