Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, the company behind the groundbreaking ChatGPT, said he is willing to invest in Korean startups and collaborate with bigger chipmakers like Samsung Electronics.
“We are exploring how to increase our investment in Korean startups,” Altman said at a conference held in Seoul on Friday.
“We are excited to meet as many as we can here today. I think this kind of collaboration is essential to our work.”
When asked about possible partnerships with Korean chipmakers like Samsung Electronics and SK hynix, Altman said he is already holding talks and willing to continue the discussions.
“Those companies in Korea are incredible assets,” he said.
Altman said he was impressed at how Koreans played around with ChatGPT when it launched.
“Korea is one of the places in the world that adapted the service the earliest and most creatively,” he said.
Following the conference, Altman met with Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol Friday amid the country’s effort to take an early lead in the much-hyped sector.
When President Yoon asked Altman about which sector Korea should focus on to stay competitive in the AI industry, Altman pinpointed the semiconductor business.
He said the development of AI will increase demand for not only processing chips but specifically memory chips.
Korea’s Samsung Electronics accounts for more than 40 percent of the DRAM memory chip sector.
Altman said AI requires the transfer of vast amounts of data, increasing the demand for memory chips. He added OpenAI currently uses Taiwanese chips but will eventually need supply from Korea.
Altman, currently on a world tour, is scheduled to visit a total of 17 cities across South America, Europe, Africa and Asia.
The CEO said he is currently working on opening an office in Japan, but will start by supporting partnerships among startups in Korea.
He is also contemplating opening more offices globally.
BY EUN-SOO JIN [firstname.lastname@example.org]