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PayPal To Cut 2,000 Jobs In Latest Tech Company Cost-Cutting

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(SAN JOSE, Calif.) — PayPal said Tuesday that it will cut about 7% of its total workforce, or about 2,000 full-time employees, as it deals with what it calls a “challenging macroeconomic environment.”

PayPal said the cuts would be phased in over several weeks, with some organizations suffering more than others. The company did not elaborate. The is the parent company of several brands, including Venmo, Xoom, and Honey.

The San Jose, California-based company is the latest in the technology sector to reduce its workforce. Google, Microsoft, and Salesforce alone announced tens of thousands of layoffs in January.

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Paypal Is Resizing Its Cost Structure

Last summer, activist investor Elliott Management purchased a $2 billion stake in stock, which announced a “information-sharing agreement” with Elliott “to continue collaboration across a range of value-creation opportunities.”

“Over the past year, we made significant progress in strengthening and reshaping our company to address the challenging macroeconomic environment while continuing to invest to meet the needs of our customers,” PayPal President and CEO Dan Schulman said in a statement on Tuesday. “We have made significant progress in right-sizing our cost structure and focusing our resources on our core strategic priorities, but there is still work to be done.”

PayPal Holdings Inc. is set to report quarterly results on February 9.

The company’s stock is down about 53% in the last year. They gained 2.3% to close at $81.49 on Tuesday.

SOURCE – (AP)

 

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OpenAI CEO Warns That ‘Societal Misalignments’ Could Make Artificial Intelligence Dangerous

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DUBAI, UAE — The CEO of ChatGPT-maker OpenAI stated on Tuesday that the hazards that keep him awake at night about artificial intelligence are the “very subtle societal misalignments” that might cause the systems to wreak havoc.

Sam Altman, addressing via video call from the World Governments Summit in Dubai, reaffirmed his proposal to establish an organization similar to the International Atomic Energy Agency to monitor AI, which is expected to advance faster than the world expects.

openai

OpenAI CEO Warns That ‘Societal Misalignments’ Could Make Artificial Intelligence Dangerous

“There are some elements in there that make it easy to imagine what may go wrong. And I’m not particularly interested in the killer robots walking down the street causing things to go wrong,” Altman remarked. “I’m much more interested in the very subtle societal misalignments where we just have these systems out in society and through no particular ill intention, things just go horribly wrong.”

However, Altman emphasized that the AI sector, including OpenAI, should not be responsible for developing industry laws.

“We are still in the middle of a lot of discussions. So, you know, everyone in the world is holding a conference. “Everyone has an idea, a policy paper, and that’s fine,” Altman explained. “I think we’re still at a time where debate is needed and healthy, but at some point in the next few years, we have to move towards an action plan with real buy-in around the world.”

OpenAI, a San Francisco-based artificial intelligence startup, is a leader in the industry. Microsoft has invested billions of dollars in OpenAI. The Associated Press has reached a partnership with OpenAI to grant them access to its news archive. Meanwhile, The New York Times sued OpenAI and Microsoft for using its content without permission to train OpenAI’s chatbots.

openai

OpenAI CEO Warns That ‘Societal Misalignments’ Could Make Artificial Intelligence Dangerous

Altman’s success with OpenAI has made him the public face of generative AI’s rapid commercialization and anxieties about what the new technology may bring.

The UAE, an authoritarian federation of seven hereditary sheikhdoms, shows evidence of this risk. Speech remains strictly regulated. These constraints impact the flow of reliable information — the same details that AI programmes like ChatGPT employ as machine-learning systems to deliver user replies.

The Emirates also boasts the Abu Dhabi corporation G42, led by the country’s strong national security adviser. Experts believe G42 has the world’s leading Arabic-language artificial intelligence model. The corporation has been accused of spying due to its involvement with a mobile phone app identified as spyware. It has also faced allegations that it secretly collected genetic material from Americans for the Chinese government.

Due to American concerns, G42 has announced that it will break connections with Chinese suppliers. However, the conversation with Altman, hosted by the UAE’s Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Omar al-Olama, addressed none of the local issues.

openai

OpenAI CEO Warns That ‘Societal Misalignments’ Could Make Artificial Intelligence Dangerous

Altman, for his part, said he was encouraged to see schools embrace AI as critical for the future, despite teachers’ fears that pupils might use it to compose papers. However, he stressed that artificial intelligence is still in its early stages.

“I think the reason is the current technology that we have is like… that very first mobile with a black-and-white screen,” said Altman. “So, give us some time. But, in a few more years, I believe it will be far better than it is now. And in a decade, it should be rather extraordinary.”

SOURCE – (AP)

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Amazon’s Ring To Shutter Video-Sharing Program Popular With Police

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LONDON — Amazon cancelled its acquisition of robot vacuum firm iRobot on Monday, citing “undue and disproportionate regulatory hurdles” after the European Union opposed the transaction.

The firms announced in a joint statement that they were disappointed but agreed to end the acquisition. The merger drew antitrust attention on both sides of the Atlantic, especially in Europe, where authorities investigating competition issues were scheduled to make a final decision by February 14.

Amazon said that in 2022, it would buy iRobot, the producer of the circular-shaped Roomba vacuum, for $1.7 billion cash. However, the deal’s value decreased by 15% after iRobot took on extra debt.

Amazon will pay the Bedford, Massachusetts-based business a previously agreed-upon termination fee of $94 million, iRobot said in a separate release, which also revealed that it would lay off around 31% of its workforce and fire its CEO.

ring

Amazon’s Ring To Shutter Video-Sharing Program Popular With Police

The European Commission, the European Union’s executive arm and top antitrust watchdog warned Amazon last year of its “preliminary view” that the iRobot acquisition would reduce industry competition.

While British antitrust regulators cleared the deal in June, the Federal Trade Commission in the United States continued investigating.

The European Commission waited to respond to a request for comment. It was concerned that Amazon would minimise the exposure of an iRobot competitor’s product or restrict access to certain labels, such as “Amazon’s Choice,” which could draw more customers.

Last year, the commission said that Amazon may have discovered ways to boost the expenses for iRobot’s competitors to advertise and sell their products on its platform.

Amazon’s chief counsel, David Zapolsky, slammed authorities, saying consumers would miss out on “faster innovation and more competitive prices.”

“Mergers and acquisitions like this help companies like iRobot better compete in the global marketplace, particularly against companies, and from countries, that aren’t subject to the same regulatory requirements in fast-moving technology segments like robotics,” he added.

ring

Amazon’s Ring To Shutter Video-Sharing Program Popular With Police

He also pointed out that “undue and disproportionate regulatory hurdles discourage entrepreneurs, who should be able to see acquisition as one path to success, and that hurts both consumers and competition— the very things that regulators say they’re trying to protect.”

Now that the purchase has been called off, iRobot has announced a restructuring strategy to stabilise the company. The corporation plans to lay off approximately 350 people as part of these reforms.

Colin Angle, iRobot’s chairman and CEO, will also step down. Glen Weinstein, the company’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, will become interim CEO.

Consumer rights groups had expressed worries about the Amazon-iRobot merger, claiming it would increase the ecommerce giant’s domination in the smart home industry.

Amazon has previously acquired several smart home firms, including Blink, Ring, and Eero, a mesh-networking Wi-Fi company.

ring

Amazon’s Ring To Shutter Video-Sharing Program Popular With Police

This is the latest example of a partnership between US corporations that failed after being scrutinised by European regulators.

Adobe abandoned its $20 billion acquisition of online design business Figma last year due to antitrust concerns raised by the EU and the UK. After losing legal battles with antitrust officials in Europe and the United States, biotech giant Illumina was forced to cancel its $7.1 billion acquisition of cancer-screening business Grail.

SOURCE – (CNN)

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AMAZON: Bid To Buy Roomba Maker IRobot Is Called Off Amid Pushback In Europe

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LONDON — Amazon cancelled its acquisition of robot vacuum firm iRobot on Monday, citing “undue and disproportionate regulatory hurdles” after the European Union opposed the transaction.

The firms announced in a joint statement that they were disappointed but agreed to end the acquisition. The merger drew antitrust attention on both sides of the Atlantic, especially in Europe, where authorities investigating competition issues were scheduled to make a final decision by February 14.

Amazon said that in 2022, it would buy iRobot, the producer of the circular-shaped Roomba vacuum, for $1.7 billion cash. However, the deal’s value decreased by 15% after iRobot took on extra debt.

amazon

AMAZON: Bid To Buy Roomba Maker IRobot Is Called Off Amid Pushback In Europe

Amazon will pay the Bedford, Massachusetts-based business a previously agreed-upon termination fee of $94 million, iRobot said in a separate release, which also revealed that it would lay off around 31% of its workforce and fire its CEO.

The European Commission, the European Union’s executive arm and top antitrust watchdog warned Amazon last year of its “preliminary view” that the iRobot acquisition would reduce industry competition.

While British antitrust regulators cleared the deal in June, the Federal Trade Commission in the United States continued investigating.

The European Commission waited to respond to a request for comment. It was concerned that Amazon would minimise the exposure of an iRobot competitor’s product or restrict access to certain labels, such as “Amazon’s Choice,” which could draw more customers.

Last year, the commission said that Amazon may have discovered ways to boost the expenses for iRobot’s competitors to advertise and sell their products on its platform.

amazon

AMAZON: Bid To Buy Roomba Maker IRobot Is Called Off Amid Pushback In Europe

Amazon’s chief counsel, David Zapolsky, slammed authorities, saying consumers would miss out on “faster innovation and more competitive prices.”

“Mergers and acquisitions like this help companies like iRobot better compete in the global marketplace, particularly against companies, and from countries, that aren’t subject to the same regulatory requirements in fast-moving technology segments like robotics,” he added.

He also pointed out that “undue and disproportionate regulatory hurdles discourage entrepreneurs, who should be able to see acquisition as one path to success, and that hurts both consumers and competition— the very things that regulators say they’re trying to protect.”

Now that the purchase has been called off, iRobot has announced a restructuring strategy to stabilise the company. The corporation plans to lay off approximately 350 people as part of these reforms.

Colin Angle, iRobot’s chairman and CEO, will also step down. Glen Weinstein, the company’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, will become interim CEO.

Consumer rights groups had expressed worries about the Amazon-iRobot merger, claiming it would increase the ecommerce giant’s domination in the smart home industry.

amazon

AMAZON: Bid To Buy Roomba Maker IRobot Is Called Off Amid Pushback In Europe

Amazon has previously acquired several smart home firms, including Blink, Ring, and Eero, a mesh-networking Wi-Fi company.

This is the latest example of a partnership between US corporations that failed after being scrutinised by European regulators.

Adobe abandoned its $20 billion acquisition of online design business Figma last year due to antitrust concerns raised by the EU and the UK. After losing legal battles with antitrust officials in Europe and the United States, biotech giant Illumina was forced to cancel its $7.1 billion acquisition of cancer-screening business Grail.

SOURCE – (AP)

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