Elon Musk's AI firm xAI files to raise up to $1 billion in equity offering


FILE PHOTO: Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and owner of X, formerly known as Twitter, attends the Viva Technology conference dedicated to innovation and startups at the Porte de Versailles exhibition centre in Paris, France, June 16, 2023. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes/File Photo

(Reuters) -Elon Musk's artificial intelligence startup xAI has filed with the U.S. securities regulator to raise up to $1 billion in an equity offering, according to a filing on Tuesday.

The company has raised $134.7 million in equity financing from a total offering amount of $1 billion, the filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission showed.

Fundraising for AI remains a bright spot for startups this year, following OpenAI's launch of popular chatbot ChatGPT last year and raising of $10 billion from its strategic backer Microsoft Corp. Regulators, however, are concerned about the potential use of the technology to spread misinformation.

Musk has been vocal about his plans to build safer AI. In a Twitter Spaces event earlier in the year he said that rather than explicitly programming morality into its AI, xAI will seek to create a "maximally curious" AI.

The billionaire, who has criticized Big Tech's AI efforts as ridden with censorship, in July launched xAI, calling it a "maximum truth-seeking AI" to rival Google's Bard and Microsoft's Bing AI.

In 2015, Musk co-founded OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, which has created a frenzy for generative AI technology around the world, but stepped down from the board in 2018.

XAI last month launched "Grok" a chatbot rivaling OpenAI's ChatGPT.

The artificial intelligence startup will be integrated into his social media platform X and also be available as a standalone app, Musk said in a post in November.

The team behind xAI, which launched in July this year, comes from Google's DeepMind, the Windows parent, and other top AI research firms.

(Reporting by Akash Sriram and Jaiveer Shekhawat in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Arsheeya Bajwa; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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