British Regulators Criticizing Top Tech Company AI Partnerships?!

( – British antitrust leaders are looking at partnerships between Microsoft and Amazon with smaller artificial intelligence makers. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority said that it was leaving the floor open for comments on the partnerships of Microsoft and French AI company Mistral, as well as Amazon and U.S. startup Anthropic, and Microsoft’s decision to hire former Inflection AI employees.

The purpose behind the investigation of these partnerships is to see if the arrangements made between them qualify as mergers. The invitation to comment on the partnerships is said to be held next month and would come prior to a Phase 1 review of the British regulators.

Microsoft recently made a 15 million euro investment into Mistral, which is a firm that was made up of employees from Meta and Google’s DeepMind Lab. This deal would allow Mistral to make its language models available on Microsoft’s Azure Cloud computing platform.

Amazon invested four billion dollars into Anthropic which is a U.S. AI firm that created the Claude language model and chatbot.

A spokesperson for Microsoft denied the notion regarding their relationship with Mistral and also their hiring from Inflection, saying, “We remain confident that common business practices such as the hiring of talent or making a fractional investment in an AI start-up promote competition and are not the same as a merger.”

“We will provide the UK Competition and Markets Authority with the information it needs to complete its inquiries expeditiously,” they added.

An Amazon spokesperson said that the claims were “unprecedented” for them to review, saying, “Unlike partnerships between other AI startups and large technology companies, our collaboration with Anthropic includes a limited investment, doesn’t give Amazon a board director or observer role, and continues to have Anthropic running its models on multiple cloud providers.”

This goes to show that British regulators are taking a stance against U.S. technology companies and the competition that they impose.

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