X.AI, an artificial intelligence (AI) startup founded by Elon Musk, has filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to raise up to $1 billion in an equity offering.

The company has already secured nearly $135 million from four investors, with the initial sale happening on November 29. This leaves $865.3 million yet to be sold. The filing indicates a “binding and enforceable agreement” for the acquisition of the remaining shares.

The company has also set a minimum investment threshold of $2 million for external investors.

This equity offering is a major step for x.AI as it looks to grow bigger. Selling shares not only brings in essential capital but also potentially diversifies the company’s shareholder base.

The funds raised from this equity offering are pivotal for x.AI’s strategic expansion. With $135 million already secured, x.AI is demonstrating strong initial investor confidence. The funds from this offering are expected to fuel research and development, expand business operations, and possibly fund strategic acquisitions or partnerships. This is essential for x.AI to stay competitive in the fast-moving world of AI.

A key part of x.AI’s expansion strategy is the development of its new chatbot, Grok. Launched in November 2022 for testing, Grok is positioned to challenge prominent AI chatbots like ChatGPT and Google’s Bard. Its unique personality and ability to handle edgier questions differentiate it in the crowded AI market.

By incorporating Grok into X’s Premium+ subscription, x.AI is not just enhancing its product offering but also aiming to increase user engagement and compete with AI giants such as OpenAI and DeepMind. This move by Musk and x.AI is a strategic attempt to catch up and make a mark in an industry led by these established players.

Elon Musk’s Journey into AI and the Vision Behind x.AI

Elon Musk, famous for his leadership at Tesla and SpaceX, stepped into the world of AI by starting a new company called ‘x.AI’. At x.AI, Musk is in charge as the director, with Jared Birchall as the corporate secretary.

Musk’s plans for xAI are not limited to this new company alone. He aims to incorporate AI into his other ventures, including Tesla and SpaceX. For example, Tesla is focusing on using AI for various purposes, such as robotics, automation, and unique projects like the Tesla Bot and AI chips for self-driving cars.

This isn’t Musk’s first time venturing into AI. He was crucial in starting OpenAI, which created the well-known ChatGPT chatbot. Musk left OpenAI in 2018 before it split into a for-profit company because it conflicted with his other business activities, but he continues to be a significant voice in the AI field, often pointing out its fast growth and the dangers that come with it.

Musk’s concerns about AI were highlighted earlier this year when he joined other experts in calling for a pause in the development of AI systems more advanced than GPT-4. This call stemmed from concerns over the lack of control and understanding of these powerful AI systems.