NZ citizen Thiel to leave board of Facebook parent Meta

Source: Associated Press

Peter Thiel, a Silicon Valley billionaire, adviser to former President Donald Trump, and New Zealand citizen, is leaving the board of directors of Facebook parent company Meta.

Peter Thiel

The company said Monday that Thiel will stay on until Meta’s next shareholder meeting later this year, where he will not stand for re-election.

The entrepreneur was controversially granted New Zealand citizenship in 2011 despite having only spent 12 days in the country.

Thiel joined Facebook's board in 2005, a year after the company was founded and seven years before its made its debut on Wall Street. But he has been an increasingly polarising figure among the company's directors due to his conservative politics.

“Peter is truly an original thinker who you can bring your hardest problems and get unique suggestions," Meta chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement. “He 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.”

Meta Platforms Inc. did not say what Thiel planned to do after his director stint is over. But reports in The New York Times and Bloomberg, citing unnamed sources close to Thiel, said he wants to focus on influencing November’s midterm elections and support candidates who would further Trump's agenda.

A representative for Thiel did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

In a statement, Thiel said “It has been a privilege to work with one of the great entrepreneurs of our time. Mark Zuckerberg’s intelligence, energy, and conscientiousness are tremendous.”