OpenAI CEO Sam Altman is in talks with investors to raise funds for an initiative to boost global AI chip manufacturing capacity. 

The ChatGPT maker’s boss is reportedly looking for as much as $5trn–7trn, according to the Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the matter. 

Altman’s pitching comes as OpenAI and others in the industry suffer a shortage of AI chips required to train their models. The slow access to the chips means AI companies are having their growth stunted. 

Altman is proposing a joint partnership between OpenAI, chipmakers, power providers and investors to put money towards opening chip manufacturing plants, which would then be run by chipmakers, according to the report. 

However, the report notes that the valuation for investment is abnormally large for usual fundraising rounds.

Research and analysis company GlobalData predicts the AI chip industry will experience unprecedented growth in 2024, with leading chipmaker Nvidia becoming less of a dominant force in the industry.

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The demand for NVIDIA‘s graphics processing units (GPUs) was so high in 2023 that it led to chip shortages and supply chain disruptions. Start-ups that had begun to implement generative AI into their operations were left scrambling for computing power, as enterprise hardware was affected by the slowdown worldwide. 

US chip giant Nvidia joined the one-trillion-dollar club of companies in 2023, bolstered by the huge demand for its H100 GPUs, an essential part of modern AI infrastructure.