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JPMorgan is raiding Google and Facebook for its new AI team

As we reported last month, JPMorgan is busy growing an artificial intelligence (AI) team in California. The bank is currently advertising seven artificial roles in San Mateo (down from 17 last time we looked). They include openings for an AI platform senior cloud engineer and an AI full-stack engineer to work on a mysterious new AI platform that has yet to be launched. 

JPM is deliberately targeting big tech for its new roles. It says the ideal hires are "the best from Silicon Valley," and that it's already recruited from the likes of Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and Salesforce.

In fact. JPMorgan's Silicon Valley AI presence is run by former Googlers. Apoorv Saxena joined from Google in August 2018 to run AI for JPM globally out of San Mateo. Saxena subsequently recruited Rich Merz from Google in January 2019 and Daryush Laqab from Google a month later. Merz is an executive director in AI product strategy and transformation at JPM; Laqab is an AI product manager and head of JPM's machine learning products. Both men say they're hiring. Other big tech recruits include Irina Max from Apple (lead data scientist), who joined in June 2019, and Yang Wang, who joined in September 2018 from Facebook, just after Apoorv. 

Unsurprisingly, many of JPM's new hires have a cloud background. The bank's new AI platform, which is being built from scratch, is designed to work in  multi-cloud environments (AWS, Azure and Google Cloud). The intention is that it will accelerate the work of data scientists across the bank.

Not all of JPMorgan's San Mateo AI hires are drawn from big tech. The publicly accessible HIB visa database shows that the bank has also made six hires on H1B visas for the team since April 2019. Recruits are paid salaries of between $140k and $170k.

Most banks are busy moving applications onto the cloud. Bank of America said in October that it has built its own internal cloud and reduced its data centers from 67 to 23. The plan is to start migrating to external cloud providers once their cost-efficiency and safety is confirmed.

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor

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