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May 28, 2024 498

"Microsoft and Amazon to invest $5.6 billion into France as Macron courts tech giants "

#global

"Microsoft says it is committing 4 billion euros ($4.3 billion) toward expanding its cloud and AI infrastructure in France, in addition to funding AI skilling and support for France’s technology industry. "

Microsoft announced on Monday a significant commitment of 4 billion euros ($4.3 billion) to expand its cloud and AI infrastructure in France. This investment will also encompass funding for AI skilling initiatives and support for the country's technology industry. As part of this initiative, Microsoft plans to introduce up to 25,000 advanced GPUs (graphics processing units) in France by the end of 2025. Additionally, the company aims to train 1 million individuals and support 2,500 AI startups by 2027. This announcement was made at the "Choose France" summit, an event focused on attracting foreign investment to the country.

Microsoft's president, Brad Smith, emphasized the importance of this investment in fostering digital innovation and economic growth in France. He highlighted the company's dedication to building cutting-edge cloud and AI infrastructure, training individuals with AI skills, and supporting French startups to leverage Microsoft's technology responsibly and confidently. As part of the expansion, Microsoft will also open a new data center in Mulhouse, enhancing its infrastructure in the region. In parallel, Amazon committed to investing 1.2 billion euros in France, which will create over 3,000 jobs and expand its logistics network to support local economic development and reduce the carbon footprint of deliveries.

Collectively, Microsoft and Amazon's commitments amount to $5.6 billion in funding for France, contributing to a record 15 billion euros of investment commitments from foreign companies at the Choose France summit. French President Emmanuel Macron has been actively promoting France as a hub for artificial intelligence. Paris has already established itself as a significant center for AI research and development, with notable investments such as Facebook's AI lab, FAIR, since 2015. Macron's government has pledged substantial funding to support AI advancements, including 500 million euros announced last year to foster new AI "champions" and a prior commitment of 1.5 billion euros before 2022. Microsoft's recent investments, including a 15 million euro stake in AI startup Mistral, further underline its strategic focus on bolstering AI capabilities in France.