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Reid Hoffman's New Start-Up Poaches First Staff From Google and Meta

David A. Grogan | CNBC
  • Headquartered in Silicon Valley, Inflection's aim is to develop AI software products that make it easier for humans to communicate with computers.
  • When the company was launched, the only three team members that were made public were Suleyman, Hoffman and former DeepMind researcher Karén Simonyan. However, others have now joined the fold.

Inflection AI, the start-up launched earlier this month by LinkedIn billionaire Reid Hoffman and DeepMind co-founder Mustafa Suleyman, has poached artificial intelligence gurus from Google and Meta, according to CNBC analysis.

Headquartered in Silicon Valley, Inflection's aim is to develop AI software products that make it easier for humans to communicate with computers.

When the company was launched, the only three team members that were made public were Suleyman, Hoffman and former DeepMind researcher Karén Simonyan. However, others have now joined the fold.

Heinrich Kuttler left his research engineering manager role at Meta AI in London this month to become a member of the founding team at Inflection, working on the technical side of the business, according to his LinkedIn page. He is one of many people to have left Meta since CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced a pivot to the so-called metaverse.

Elsewhere, Joe Fenton left his senior product manager role at Google in February to become a member of the founding team at Inflection AI, working on the product side of the business.

Both Kuttler and Fenton, who used to work at DeepMind with Suleyman, did not immediately respond to a CNBC request for comment. Inflection declined to comment. Meta and Google did not immediately respond to a CNBC request for comment.

Researchers and engineers that land AI jobs at DeepMind, Google and Meta tend to have impressive resumes. Fenton, for example, has a first class degree in physics from the University of Warwick in England, while Kuttler studied theoretical and mathematical physics at leading universities in Germany.

Inflection is the first company Hoffman has co-founded since he sold LinkedIn to Microsoft for $26.2 billion in 2016. It is also the first company Suleyman has co-founded since he sold DeepMind to Google in 2014 for around $600 million. The pair are also investors at venture capital firm Greylock.

"AI is one of the most transformative technologies of our time," Hoffman said in a statement shared with CNBC at the time of the launch.

"Mustafa has been at the forefront of some of the most exciting advances in artificial intelligence. It's a privilege to join him and Karen in building Inflection."

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