Microsoft and Amazon Commit Billions to Cloud and AI in France

DateMay 13, 2024

In a major development that highlights France’s rising stature in the tech industry, Microsoft and Amazon/AWS have declared large investments meant to support the cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) sectors in France. Microsoft announced on Monday that it would invest 4 billion euros, or $4.3 billion, in expanding its cloud and AI infrastructure in France.

Microsoft’s investment covers both broad support for France’s expanding technology sector and money for the development of AI skills. Microsoft aims to train one million people and assist 2,500 AI businesses by 2027.  The introduction of up to 25,000 sophisticated GPUs (graphics processing units) to France by the end of 2025 is a crucial component of Microsoft’s goal. 

The announcements by Microsoft and Amazon/AWS were made During the ‘Choose France’ summit, which aims to draw in foreign investment. As a result of its growth, Microsoft will have more data centers than it already has in the Paris and Marseille regions. The business also intends to build a new data center campus in the Mulhouse Alsace Agglomération, which is located in the Grand Est Region.

France as a Center for AI

Amazon said at the same time that it will invest 1.2 billion euros in France. With this investment, approximately 3,000 new jobs are expected to be created in addition to the 2,000 already planned for 2024. With this large investment, Amazon/AWS is indicating that it wants to become much more present in France.

The combined pledges of Amazon/AWS and Microsoft total an astounding $5.6 billion. These declarations fit into a larger pattern observed during the yearly Choose France summit, which obtained record investment commitments totaling 15 billion euros from a range of foreign corporations. The strong promotion of France as a center for artificial intelligence by French President Emmanuel Macron appears to be paying off. Facebook built FAIR, one of its main AI labs, in Paris in 2015, demonstrating the city’s status as a major hub for AI research and development.

Microsoft says it has made a point of demonstrating its dedication to running its AI infrastructure and services in accordance with the highest industry standards for ethical AI and environmental sustainability. To promote responsible AI practices across the industry and spread best practices, the company launched an AI Assurance Program and adopted a Responsible AI Standard for its platforms and services.

These clou and AI investments by Microsoft and Amazon/AWS are anticipated to greatly advance technology infrastructure and talent development, opening the door for AI-powered quick growth of France’s IT sector.

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