Amazon’s latest services point to the company’s efforts to strengthen its artificial intelligence (AI) team. The US-based e-commerce major has hired co-founders, including CEO David Luan, and several other key members of San Francisco-based AI startup Adept. With this move, Amazon aims to shed its image of being a laggard in the competitive AI landscape.

In a blog post, Adept also confirmed that Zach Brock, head of engineering, will take over as the company’s new CEO. The company also noted that it will remain an independent company and that the deal includes licensing Adept’s automation technology to Amazon. However, the details of this non-exclusive deal, including the fee amount, are under wraps.

According to a Reuters report, sources familiar with the matter claim that Adept has held discussions with other tech companies, including Meta. However, the social media giant decided not to tie up or partner with the startup.

The Role of Former Skilled Workers at Amazon

In a statement to Reuters, an Amazon spokesperson also confirmed that skilled workers have already joined the company and about 20 skilled workers remain at the startup.

The report also claims that Amazon has assigned the incoming expert team to different areas. Luan, the startup’s former CEO, will, along with a few others, work under Rohit Prasad, who leads Amazon’s Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) team focused on advanced AI development.

Meanwhile, other specialist hires are expected to join teams working on devices and various Amazon services. The move by Prasad (formerly head of Alexa and now reporting directly to CEO Andy Jesse) marks a focused effort within Amazon to consolidate its AI initiatives.

It has already brought together researchers from the Alexa AI and Amazon Science team to work on training models, demonstrating its commitment to pooling resources for AI development.

In a memo, Prasad also said the new hires will “significantly help in our quest to achieve AGI.”

The report also claims that Amazon is investing in training a new, more powerful large language model to compete with Microsoft-backed OpenAI and Alphabet-owned Google’s top models.

The recent addition by Adept indicates the tech giant’s intention to develop AI agent tools, an area that major labs are currently focusing on.

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