Microsoft Launches London AI Hub Focused on Language Model Research

Microsoft’s strategic partner OpenAI, opened its own London office last June

Ben Wodecki, Jr. Editor

April 9, 2024

2 Min Read
Aerial view of river Thames and London Tower Bridge at Twilight
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Microsoft is establishing an AI hub in London to serve as the home of its consumer-facing AI research arm, Microsoft AI.

The AI hub will be located in Microsoft’s office in Paddington, in the heart of the city and a short walk from Westminster.

AI scientist Jordan Hoffman will lead the London AI hub. Hoffman was previously at AI startup Inflection but joined a group of staff who recently left the startup for Microsoft.

Mustafa Suleyman, who co-founded DeepMind and was part of the Inflection team that joined Microsoft to lead its new research arm, said the new London hub will “drive pioneering work to advance state-of-the-art language models and their supporting infrastructure.”

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In the coming months, Microsoft will begin to hire AI scientists and engineers to work in the hub.

“There is an enormous pool of AI talent and expertise in the U.K. and Microsoft AI plans to make a significant, long-term investment in the region as we begin hiring the best AI scientists and engineers into this new AI hub,” Suleyman said. “As a British citizen, born and raised in London, I’m proud to have co-founded and built a cutting-edge AI business here. I’m deeply aware of the extraordinary talent pool and AI ecosystem in the U.K. and I’m excited to make this commitment to the U.K. on behalf of Microsoft AI.”

Related:DeepMind Co-Founder to Lead Microsoft’s Consumer AI Efforts

OpenAI, Microsoft’s strategic partner, opened its own London office last June. Suleyman said the new London AI team would “collaborate closely” with OpenAI and other partners.

U.K. Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan said on X (formerly known as Twitter) that Microsoft’s new AI hub “is another huge vote of confidence in the U.K.’s status as a global leader in AI and our mission to develop it safely, driving innovation and growth across the country.”

Howard Dawber, the deputy mayor of London for business said on LinkedIn that Microsoft’s AI hub “is really good news and underlines how London is becoming a global hub of AI.”

Microsoft currently has a research facility located in Cambridge, approximately 50 miles from London. The Microsoft Cambridge team is currently focusing on AI-related research projects such as Project Silica, which aims to develop sustainable long-term data storage solutions using glass.

Microsoft’s decision to expand its U.K. presence adds to the company’s plans to build AI infrastructure in the country, adding 20,000 GPUs by 2026, as well as pledges to train local workers.

About the Author(s)

Ben Wodecki

Jr. Editor

Ben Wodecki is the Jr. Editor of AI Business, covering a wide range of AI content. Ben joined the team in March 2021 as assistant editor and was promoted to Jr. Editor. He has written for The New Statesman, Intellectual Property Magazine, and The Telegraph India, among others. He holds an MSc in Digital Journalism from Middlesex University.

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