top of page

Join Side Hustle Weekend Newsletter

Every week, get one actionable tip to help ideate, create, and monetize your content.

  • Ankit Uttam

When Sam Altman went to Shark Tank India to pitch ChatGPT. This is what happened ๐Ÿ‘‡

You might not know it, but Sam Altman went on Shark Tank India to pitch his startup OpenAI and its new product ChatGPT.ย 

Thisย isย howย theย pitchย wentย โžก๏ธ

The year was 2021.ย 

Shark Tank India - Season 1 Episode 37.

Judges in Shark Tank Season 1:ย 

  • Ashneer Grover: Managing Director and co-founder of BharatPe

  • Aman Gupta: Co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of boAt

  • Anupam Mittal: Founder and CEO of Shaadi and People Group

  • Ghazal Alagh: Co-founder and Chief Mama of MamaEarth

  • Namita Thapar: Executive Director of Emcure Pharmaceuticals

  • Peyush Bansal: Co-founder and CEO of Lenskart

  • Vineeta Singh: CEO and co-founder of Sugar Cosmetics

After showing a demo of ChatGPT 3,ย Sam Altmanย looked at the sharks and began his pitch.

Altman: OpenAI is a research organization that is working on developing AI for various use cases like Robotics, Autonomous cars, Speech and Image recognition, Virtual assistants, In health care AI can be used to diagnose diseases, recommend treatments, and analyze medical data and in financial services to predict market trends, detect fraud, and optimize portfolios. There are multiple use cases in many industries where AI can do the heavy lifting for humans. ChatGPT is out most basic use case but i believe that it will be wildly popular. Infact people will use to create social media content, emails, pitch decks, and so much more.


Peyushย Bansal spoke first:ย So, you are saying that AI will do all these things as humans are not doing it good enough.

Altman: I am saying that AI will work as an assistant to humans and will do the analysis faster to speed up the decision process.

Peyush: What is your revenue? Profits?

Altman: Revenue is zero.ย 

Anupam Mittal: Zero? You are not making any money?ย 

Altman: No.

Anupam: So, when do you think, you will start making money?

Altman: We have no current plans to make any revenue. We also have no idea how we may one day generate revenue. [Altman said this in an interview when Microsoft invested in it]


Ashneer Gover spoke for the first time: Kya bol rha hai Yaar?ย 


Altman: OpenAI is a research organization so revenue is not the primary motive.

Ashneer:ย Bakwaas hai yeh. Yeh Sab Doglapan hai. Dhanda aise nahi hota.


Altman: We are planning to launch ChatGPT or Chat Generative Pre-Trained Transformer - a chatbot in late 2022. It might be used to generate some revenue but I can't say for sure how.

Ghazal Alagh: We are in December 2021, and you are talking about late 2022. Mamaearth started making money from day 1.

Vineeta Singh: What is ChatGPT?

Altman: It's an AI chatbot.

Vineeta: Like they have on Zomato and Swiggy. The chatbots that give repetitive answers.

Altman: ChatGPT will be an advanced version of those.

Vineetaย Singh: How much advanced.

Altmanย (thinks for a second): At least 10 times or more. And I am talking about the third version of ChatGPT. The later versions will be able to do more complex tasks.

Namitaย Thapar: Complex tasks like can they write a book?

Altman: I think so.

Amanย Gupta: AI will write a book?ย Yeh to hum bhi bana lenge.

Altman: I'll say it's totally impossible to rival us in training these core models, and I'll advise you not to even attempt it. But it's your responsibility to try anyway. But I reckon it's quite a futile pursuit.ย [Altman said this in an interview when he came to India]

Anupam: Mujhe lagta hai aapko dramebaazi ka bohot shauq hai.ย 


Ashneer: Isses wahiyat product na maine kabhi dekha hai aur naa hi mai dekhna chahta hu.


Altman kept looking at the sharks without responding.

Other articles you might like;

Peyush: What is your ask?

Altman: I'm looking at 10 billion valuation.

Aman Guptaย coughed loudly: 10 billion? Do you even know how many zeroes are in that. Boat is not even crossed 1000 crore rupees in revenue even when it is making profits. and you have no idea how you will make profits.

Namitaย looked atย Vinitaย and smiled as if saying this guy is mad.ย 

Ghazal Alaghย grabbed her cup of coffee from the side table.ย 

She knew she was not going to invest in this madman but she was interested in the drama.

Altman: I am not talking about 10 billion rupees.

Ashneer: So, is it 10 billion Pakistani rupees?

Everyone laughed.

Altman: US dollars. 10 billion US dollars.

Ashneer looked visible angry.


Aman Gupta coughed even more loudly.


Ghazal almost threw up the coffee on her expensive suit.ย 

Anupam Mittal was seething was anger too.ย 

Peyush sat in silence.

Namita looked at Vinita but this time she was not smiling but her eyes still said the same thing -ย This guy is mad.ย 

No one spoke for a long time.

Namitaย was the first one to speak after a long silence: "Byju's is one of India's highest valued startup and even its valuation is not 10 bn dollars."

Altman didn't say anything.

Aman: "Koi aur hai? I mean, is there any other investor?"

Altman: Microsoft has promised to invest 13 billion in OpenAI over a multi-year period.ย [Microsoft invested in OpenAI in 2019]

Groverย who was sitting quietly: "And what is their stake?"

Altman: Microsoft does not own any portion of OpenAI and is simply entitled to share of profit distributions.ย [This is how the deal is between Microsoft and OpenAI is]

Grover: Kya bakwaas kar rha hai yaar. Microsoft ko bhi dhanda nhi aata lagta hai. they will give you tens of billions of dollars but won't own any portion. Mazaak chal rha hai yaha.

Altman: I'm not joking.

The sharks looked at each other.ย 

Namita made faces.


Anupamย asked the question everyone had: "So what do you want from us?"

Altmanย smiled a little: "We will be happy if some of you join us and mentor us."

Other articles you might like;

Aman: "Kitna paisa chahiye and badle mai hamein kya milega? What is your ask and what will we get in return?"

Altmanย continued with his smile: "Same deal as Microsoft. You invest in OpenAI. You will get a share of profit distributions."

Peyush: "What about the stake that you will give us?"

Altman: "You won't have any stake in OpenAI."

Ashneer: "Kaun ho tum bhai? Kaha se aaye ho? Dhande ka matlab bhi pata hai tumhe. When you yourself said a while ago that you have no current plans to make any revenue. You also have no idea how we you will generate revenue. Meaning there is no revenue today and also in future. So there is no profit. So, basically, this is chandaa maango scheme hai."

Ashneerย looked at other Sharks before he continued: "You want our money but you will give us nothing in return expect part of some non-existent profits."


Aman: Scheme to badhiya hai boss but yaha nahi chalegi.

Vinita looked at Namita and made a gesture with her hands about Altman.


Anupam who now seemed very angry: I don't know how did you made a fool of Microsoft by convincing them to invest billions in your startup? You should teach that. Maybe then you will make some money selling that course. Use ChatGPT to write that script for you.ย 

Altman: Thank you for your suggestion.

Aman: Whatever you are making, tomorrow a lot of Indian entrepreneurs will be making the same thing and sell it and make money. In fact I see a man who can do this already.


Vinitaย asked: Who?

Aman: Bhavish Aggarwal

Gazal Alaghย asked putting her cup of coffee back at the side table: Woh Ola waala?

Aman: Ha... that guy. He will make ChatGPT's rival in no time. I'll invest in his company.ย 

[Bhavish Aggarwal launched Krutrim in 2024 touted as India's first AI chatbot but many reports said that it was just a wrapper of ChatGPT and not something unique.]

Altman: I'll still say this is a great opportunity for you guys. This is going to explode and change the future.ย 

[Today OpenAI's valuation is $80 Bn.]

Grover: Let me change your future. Sell me your company. I'll give you 5 Crore. Rupees not dollars. You go home, buy a nice car, pay your home loan, put some in an Fixed deposit and chill. If you want, I'll also give you a job in my company BharatPe. I own that company.

[In March 2022, Grover and his wife, were sacked from BharatPe on multiple allegations of misappropriation of funds.]


Everyone laughed.

Altman said nothing. Showed no expressions. Instead looked at other sharks for their response.

Namita: For me, yeh meri expertise nahi hai so I'm out.


Vinita Singh: Aapme talent bohot hai. Aapka presentation bahut hi unique and innovative hai. But you need to find something else to do. Maybe find a job as this startup is going to fold very soon without any revenue. Iss vajah se I'm out.

Other articles you might like;

Ghazal Alagh: Sam, you should learn from MamaEarth. We create products that are safe to use for kids and mothers. And we found a way to sell them. Now we are selling them. And we are still in losses, but we are going to be making profits very soon. And then we are going to go for an IPO. The valuation is going to be insane like 24,000 crore rupees or 3 billion dollars.


Everyone is confused about where Ghazal is going with his Mama earth sales pitch.

Ghazalย continued: I mean to say is that Mamaearth is a good business. We have built it with love.ย 

Altman:ย OpenAi is also love โค๏ธย 

[Sam wrote this same tweet with heart emoji on Twitter in response to his team's tweets when he was sacked from OpenAI. This phrase was also a trending one.]


Ghazalย gave a know-it-all smile: But your love is not solving a huge problem like Mamaearth is doing. (Then Ghazal looked at the camera) To all mothers out there, make sure you buy only the best for your babies. Buy only Mamaearth.

Anupamย was irritated: Ghazal enough selling your baby lotion and onion shampoo. What is your decision on investing in his startup?

Ghazalย smiled: I was already out the moment he said NO revenue.

Anupam: So, you should have told that first... why do you always have to sell your creams and shampoo?

Ashneer: Isse hi to Dhanda kehte hai. Apna samaan bhi to bechna hai.ย Good jobย Ghazal.ย And to all the mothers, only use BharatPe QR codes to pay for Mamaearth products and get huge cashback.

Anupam: Ashneer you should just shut up. Dhanda isse nahi kehte. Isse woh kehte hai... woh... anyways leave it.

Ashneer: My investors can't say shut up to me who are you to say that? Tumhari umar nikalti ja rhi hai.


Anupam: I'm a better businessman than you are.

Ashneer: I have built 2 unicorns. What have you done in life? What is the valuation of your companies combined. It's not even $500 million.

Altmanย looked confused and turned around to leave the room whileย Peyush,ย Aman Guptaย andย Vinita Singhย too joined the fight.

As the door closed behind him, Altman could still hear all the sharks fighting.ย 

PS:ย This episode was never aired as due to the fight between the sharks, the show's set was damaged, and Sony could not have the next 3 pitches recorded.

And that's howย Samย Altman'sย pitchย on Open AI at Sharkย Tankย Indiaย panned out.ย 

PPS: This is just a story so read it like one.




My name is Ankit Uttam

I'm an Author (20+ books- A few of them have been on bestsellers charts too), and I'm a solopreneur who is trying to learn each day about how to navigate this growing space and also help a few people along the way.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
MSbyAVK_AnkitUttam (13 of 1).JPG
bottom of page