USDT Maker Tether Pushes Into AI, Prioritizing ‘Transparency and Privacy’

Tether, the blockchain company behind the USDT cryptocurrency, is expanding into artificial intelligence, the firm said on Tuesday. The move, Tether said, aims to advance the accessibility and efficiency of artificial intelligence.

According to Tether, its AI focus will include developing open-source, multimodal AI models and “new industry standards.”

“Artificial intelligence stands poised to revolutionize nearly every facet of our lives, both in the real and digital worlds,” CEO of Tether Paolo Ardoino said in a statement. “Our investment in Northern Data Group, known for resilient and high-performance technologies, aligns perfectly with our vision.”

Along with the AI announcement, Tether listed new AI-focused jobs, AI Engineer and Head of AI Research and Development for its Tether Data division. Both positions are primarily remote; however, Tether has noted office locations, including Paris, Madrid, London, and Milan.

In November, Tether invested $622.6 million in Frankfurt, Germany-based Northern Data Group, a technology company that specializes in generative AI cloud platforms, Bitcoin mining operations, and providing data center infrastructure.

“As concerns grow over the monopolization of AI technologies by Big Tech, Tether data, with this announcement, is stepping forward to champion transparency and privacy in AI model development,” Tether said.

Tether—which faced scrutiny last year for failing to disclose its links to Chinese companies—did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Decrypt.

Based in the British Virgin Islands, Tether Limited developed the USDT cryptocurrency towards the end of 2014 as “Realcoin” before rebranding it as Tether.

USDT is currently the third largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization behind Bitcoin and Ethereum. Unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum, which have reached all-time highs of $73,737 and $4,878, respectively, USDT is a stablecoin designed to be pegged to the U.S. dollar. According to CoinGecko, USDT is currently trading at $0.99.

As the name implies, stablecoins aim to provide some stability in the often volatile cryptocurrency market.

As AI disrupts and transforms every business sector, the overlap between the emerging technology and cryptocurrency is getting larger. Some companies, like chipmaker Nvidia, have managed to ride astride both industries, reporting record profits and stock prices.

While USDT is not an AI-focused cryptocurrency, AI tokens and the broader cryptocurrency market have surged since the launch of Bitcoin ETFs in January. Fetch AI’s FET token is currently trading at $2.85, up 14.2% for the week. SinguralityNET’s AGIX is $1.18, up 14.6% for the week, and Ocean Protocol’s OCEAN is $1.19, up 15.4% for the week.

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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