Peter Thiel, the co-founder of Paypal and an early investor in Facebook, made his bet on Bitcoin at the start of January 2017. Since then Bitcoin has gone on to shoot upwards to over 1400%, which makes it the biggest asset that his venture fund holds today.
Thiel Has Always Been Unconventional
Peter Thiel has always been known for making unconventional investment decisions. For instance, when Paypal first came onto the scene, it was dismissed as being a waste of time since there were credit cards. The same was said for Facebook. Everyone dismissed it, saying that Myspace worked just fine. Thiel is also on Trump’s technology advisory council. When Thiel decided to support Trump, there was also a lot of uproar. Everyone knew Hillary would win for sure. This was also said for Bitcoin; most in the tech industry dismissed it as something that would only attract weirdos and geeks, and then die out.
Thiel has made his career by going against the tide. His latest Bitcoin investment has been called the “moonshot bet on Bitcoin”. Thiel earned his law degree from Stanford. He traded in derivatives, worked as a clerk for a circuit court judge and even wrote speeches for the Education Secretary.
Most of his focus today is on the Founder Fund, which he started in 2005. The fund has no mission statement. Instead, it has a manifesto that asks, “What happened to the future?” The fund has so far invested in companies such as Spotify, Lyft, Airbnb, SpaceX, and Facebook.
The Revelations Have Rocked the Markets
Estimates in the media claim that Thiel’s fund has bought about $15-20 million of Bitcoin. Reports further claim that the investment has paid off in the hundreds of millions of dollars after it experienced that major jump in value in 2017. However, no one is sure whether investors have begun to collect their profits.
When the news of the bet broke out, it had an immediate impact on the markets. Although the price of Bitcoin has slowed down in recent times, it immediately began to shoot up, reaching around $15000 and beyond in just a short while. The idea that “bitcoin investment is already estimated as the most valuable in the Founders’ most recent $1.3 billion venture fund,” is quite a headline in itself.
This has been one daring move, even for Thiel. It is especially so when you consider that you could wake up one day and the price of Bitcoin could be zero. In fact, whole countries such as South Korea and China are cracking down on, if not banning trade in cryptocoins. Whatever the case may be, Thiel’s willingness to make unconventional investment choices has been rewarded with hundreds of millions of dollars.
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