August 2, 2007
in a lively conversation
Peter Thiel is the founder and president of Clarium Capital Management LLC, a global macro hedge fund managing $2 billion in assets and which has returned 240% since its inception in October 2002. In 2005, Clarium was honored by both MarHedge and Absolute Return as the global macro fund of the year.
Mr. Thiel is most widely known as the co-founder and CEO of PayPal, the dominant online payment service, which today has over 130 million users in 103 countries. In 2002, immediately prior to forming Clarium, Mr. Thiel sold PayPal to eBay for $1.5 billion; the PayPal unit has been among eBay’s most profitable ever since.
In addition to managing Clarium, Mr. Thiel is a partner in The Founders Fund, a venture capital firm he started in 2005. He has launched and provided the initial capital for several notable technology start-ups, including LinkedIn, Palantir Technologies, and Facebook, which over the last two years has become the sixth most trafficked site in the U.S.
A frequent financial commentator, Mr. Thiel’s market insights, opinions, and articles have been featured in
The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times,
The Financial Times, Barron’s, Bloomberg
Markets, NPR, PBS, the BBC, CNBC, and the hedge fund press, and he has been profiled on
"The Charlie Rose Show" and as part of an NHK Special. He also is the subject of a chapter in Steve Drobny’s book,
Inside the House of Money.
In addition to finance, Mr. Thiel is active in a variety of academic, philanthropic, and cultural pursuits. He serves on the boards of several think tanks, including Hoover Institution, Pacific Research Institute, and Singularity Institute, which studies the tremendous benefits and dangers of artificial intelligence. He also has served on Stanford Law School’s Board of Visitors and taught Globalization, Sovereignty & Technological Change at Stanford Law School in 2004. In 2005, Mr. Thiel co-produced the
film Thank You for Smoking, based on the eponymous Christopher Buckley novel. He also is a U.S.-rated chess master.
This year, Mr. Thiel has been honored as a Young Global Leader, an award bestowed by the World Economic Forum to recognize the world’s 250 most distinguished leaders age 40 and under.
Mr. Thiel received a B.A. in Philosophy from Stanford University in 1989 and a J.D. from Stanford Law School in 1992.
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