Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Business | By Tara Barton

Tech Luminary Peter Thiel Parts Ways With Silicon Valley

Tech Luminary Peter Thiel Parts Ways With Silicon Valley

The 50-year-old Thiel, who also served on Trump's transition team, plans to move into a 7,000 square-foot home that he bought six years ago, which overlooks the Sunset Strip, and will move the headquarters of Thiel Capital and Thiel Foundation to Los Angeles, a personal familiar with the matter told the Journal.

Like some other conservatives in the tech world lately, Thiel has been complaining about Silicon Valley's liberalism and "intolerance" to other views - especially amid the growing protests against Trump's policies and actions, the controversy over sexual harassment and sexism in the tech industry and the discontent over diversity issues from both sides.

In addition, those sources say Thiel has considered resigning from the board of directors at Facebook amid quarrels with founder Mark Zuckerberg and political differences with another board member over Thiel's support of Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election.

That action, if it occurs at all, does not appear to be imminent, but Thiel did sell 73% of his remaining stake in Facebook in November, pocketing nearly $30 million.

Thiel co-founded payment service PayPal and is known for funding the Hulk Hogan lawsuit that led to the shutdown of online news site Gawker.

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The filing said he had sold another 160,805 shares for about $29 million, leaving his holdings at 59,913 Class A shares in the company. He founded Palantir in 2003, and invested the paltry sum of $500,000 for a 10.2 percent stake in Facebook in 2004.

Later the same year, he sold roughly 20 million of his remaining 26 million shares for $400million after the expiry of a lockup.

"Silicon Valley is a one-party state", Thiel said at a recent debate about tech and politics at Stanford University with Reid Hoffman, fellow venture capitalist and PayPal Mafia member, and co-founder of LinkedIn. "That's when you get in trouble politically in our society, when you're all in one side".

Last month, a former Google engineer who was sacked after circulating a memo about biological differences between men and women sued the company saying he was discriminated against as a white man with conservative political views.

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