ChatGPT maker OpenAI is in talks to sell employee shares at $86bn valuation, putting the closely held company in the league of SpaceX and Tiktok’s ByteDance

OpenAI is in talks to sell existing employees’ shares at an $86 billion valuation, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The artificial intelligence startup behind ChatGPT is negotiating the transaction, known as a tender offer, with potential investors, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing confidential information. The firm hasn’t finalized allocations and terms could still change, some of the people said. 

OpenAI, which counts Microsoft Corp. as a 49% owner, is led by Chief Executive Officer Sam Altman and President Greg Brockman. At $86 billion, it would leapfrog the likes of Stripe and Chinese online retailer Shein to become one of the world’s most valuable closely held companies, behind Elon Musk’s SpaceX and TikTok parent ByteDance. 

A representative for San Francisco-based OpenAI declined to comment. 

The company is on track to generate $1 billion of annual revenue as businesses adopt the technology, Bloomberg reported in August. 

Last month, the Wall Street Journal reported that OpenAI was discussing a potential share sale that would value the startup at $80 billion to $90 billion.

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