Peter Thiel, billionaire venture capitalist and PayPal co-founder, will be stepping down from Meta’s (formerly Facebook) board. A staunch Donald Trump supporter, reportedly, Thiel is retiring to focus more on US midterm elections scheduled in November; his immediate subsequent moves are not known yet.
Meta founder and CEO said, “Thiel has served on our board for almost two decades, and we’ve always known that at some point he would devote his time to other interests. I’m grateful he’s served on our board for as long as he has, and I wish him the best in his journey ahead.”
Thiel became an investor in the then-Facebook in 2004 when he offered $500,000 in capital at a $5 million valuation for a 10 per cent stake in the company and a seat on its board of directors. He has been on the company’s board since 2005.
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Thiel has built his massive wealth by founding the online payment company PayPal in 2008. Apart from Facebook, Thiel has also invested in organisations such as Airbnb, SpaceX, Stripe, etc. His relations with Meta founder Zuckerberg have been strong; however, he has been consciously distancing himself from Silicon Valley.
He is amongst the tech industry’s most prominent conservatives. He donated $1.25 million towards Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.
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About Meta, the company has been under the scanner regarding privacy concerns and regulators’ scrutiny. In the Q4 FY 2021 earnings that was announced on February 2, Meta’s earnings per share went down by 5.4 per cent from the year-ago quarter.