Paris is known as home to the Louvre, the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower. But now it appears the City of Light is also becoming the AI capital of Europe.
Google plans to bring a thousand employees to Paris, where they will work out of a 64,500 square foot space. This isn’t the first time a major U.S.-based AI development company has decided that Paris was the place to launch a new headquarters–Facebook is years ahead of Google, citing France’s top universities and schools for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
That’s why Facebook already created an AI research center in Paris back in 2015. Facebook also announced earlier today that it would inject another €10 million to support 40 PhD researchers instead of 10, and double the team of researchers and engineers, from 30 to 60.
Google is also creating Hubs with local partners around France, including in Rennes and three other yet unnamed locations. France cancelled Google’s $1.3 billion fine for tax noncompliance last July, clearing the way for the company’s investment into the country.
Emmanuel Macron, the French President, met with Google’s Sundar Pichai and Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg to talk business. He later hosted 140 CEOs in Versailles to woo them to France instead of Davos, Switzerland.