July 23, 2024
Microsoft plans to accelerate AI in the Nordics, commits $3.2B to Sweden

Microsoft plans to invest $3.2bn (€2.9bn) to expand its AI and cloud infrastructure in Sweden, marking the company’s biggest single investment in the Nordic nation.

The initiative aims to help boost Sweden’s competitiveness in the burgeoning artificial intelligence sector.

As part of this goal, Microsoft will deploy 20,000 of the most advanced GPUs — needed for AI training — to its three existing data centres located in Sandviken, Gävle, and Staffanstorp.

The tech giant will use Nvidia’s chips. It is also considering using chips from AMD alongside its own semiconductors, Microsoft’s President Brad Smith said in an interview.

Over the next three years, the company will also provide AI skills training to 250,000 people at schools, universities, organisations, and in the public sector. That’s equivalent to approximately 2.4% of the entire Swedish population.

The programme will focus on technical and vocational education for students, retraining for industry-specific professions, and expert training for developers. According to this year’s AI Index Report from Stanford University, Sweden ranks third globally in the demand for AI skills.

“Microsoft is committed to increasing accessibility and accelerating the introduction of AI throughout the Nordics, including Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden,” Smith said in a statement.

AI use is rapidly increasing in the Nordic countries. But according to a recent report by Danish think tank Mandag Morgen, Sweden is lagging behind. Approximately 45% of Swedish businesses and organisations currently use AI, compared to 48% in Denmark, 52% in Norway, and 61% in Finland.

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