Elon Musk, who left OpenAI’s board in 2018, suggested that former OpenAI board member Ilya Sutskever could come work at xAI.
Michael M. Santiago and Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images

  • Ilya Sutskever’s future is uncertain at OpenAI after helping to oust Sam Altman.
  • Elon Musk has suggested that Sutskever could come work with him again.
  • Musk and Altman poached Sutskever from Google in 2015 to cofound OpenAI.

OpenAI chief scientist and cofounder Ilya Sutskever faces an uncertain future at the company after participating in — and later regretting — the board’s ousting of CEO Sam Altman in November.

Insiders told Business Insider on Saturday that Sutskever is in a state of limbo at the company, as OpenAI’s leadership has yet to address his future. Sutskever is no longer a member of OpenAI’s board.

Now, another former OpenAI board member might be offering Sutskever his next job.

On December 9, one person wrote on X — formerly Twitter — that Sutskever should work at Tesla. The post got a response from Elon Musk, who is also a former OpenAI board member.

“Or xAI,” replied Musk.

Musk launched his AI startup, xAI, in July. The company started rolling out Grok, its AI rival to ChatGPT, to paying X subscribers in November.

This wouldn’t mark the first collaboration between Sutskever and Musk. In 2015, Musk and Altman convinced Sutskever to leave Google with a $1.9 million salary and starting bonus, and join them in cofounding OpenAI.

Musk and Altman were the first board members of the organization. Musk left the OpenAI board in 2018 after OpenAI’s cofounders rejected his plan to take over the company, according to Semafor.

In an interview with CNBC in May, Musk described Sutskever as the “linchpin” of OpenAI’s success.

After OpenAI’s board fired Altman, Musk defended Sutskever on X, writing, “Ilya has a good moral compass and does not seek power. He would not take such drastic action unless he felt it was absolutely necessary.”

Sutskever did not immediately respond to a request for comment from BI sent through his lawyer, outside regular business hours.

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