Microsoft scored a coup in its ongoing AI battle with Google after it hired Inflection AI and Google DeepMind co-founder Mustafa Suleyman (pictured) as EVP and CEO of its newly-formed Microsoft AI consumer group.

CEO Satya Nadella announced Suleyman’s role in a blog and noted he is now part of the company’s senior leadership team, reporting to him.

Inflection AI co-founder Karen Simonyan will also join Microsoft as chief scientist for the consumer group. Nadella stated several members of the Inflection AI team including engineers and researchers would also board Microsoft AI.

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I am excited for them to contribute their knowledge, talent and expertise to our consumer AI research and product making

Satya Nadella – CEO Microsoft

Suleyman will oversee the company’s AI Copilot, Bing search engine and other related consumer products, along with research.

US-based Inflection AI raised $1.3 billion in funding from investors including Microsoft, Bill Gates and Nvidia in 2023, taking its total at the time to $1.5 billion.

Bloomberg reported Inflection AI competed with Microsoft-backed OpenAI but decided to abandon its work developing a chatbot to focus on selling related software to businesses.

Nadella stated Microsoft would continue “support of OpenAI’s foundation model roadmap, and also innovate and build products on top of their foundation model”.

“We have been operating with speed and intensity and this infusion of new talent will enable us to accelerate our pace yet again.”

Microsoft is investing billions in AI development, having backed OpenAI with $13 billion alone.