2. Thiel Lacks Appeal
Look, we don't care if
(FB - Get Report)
director Peter Thiel unloads his shares. Let him throw the millions on the pile. He's a venture capitalist, that's what they do.
We just want to know what happened to the company's CEO Mark Zuckerberg? You remember him, right? Reddish hair. Hoodie. Acts a bit like Jesse Eisenberg in
The Social Network
Hey, we've got an idea. Maybe discouraged investors should put his face on the back of a milk carton. Got Zuck?
Yes, it's been roughly three months since Facebook's infamous IPO, and while the stock continues to go down, roughly 50% from its pricing at last check, the scuttlebutt surrounding the high-profile fiasco refuses to die down. The latest bit of gossip involving the company came Tuesday with the news that Thiel
sold roughly 20 million shares
, netting about $400 million.
Thiel still owns 5.6 million shares even after his major-league purge and that's still a serious amount of skin in the game. Nevertheless, the question was raised, and raised again and again, as to whether the PayPal co-founder's decision to lighten his load was yet another sign of Facebook's apocalypse.
The answer to that question, at least our answer, is no. Not that Facebook isn't crashing and burning. It clearly is and it will continue to do so until Zuck emerges from the billionaire protection program waving a mobile strategy for his company.
But as it relates to Thiel's sale, the venture capitalist filed his intentions with the Securities and Exchange Commission on May 18, well before the stock hit the fan. So while his timing looks next to awful, and it's true that he could have altered or spiked it, we'll give him the benefit of the doubt that he didn't mean to kick his own company while it was down.
Nevertheless, we do believe that as a director, and a high-profile one at that, Thiel should be encouraging the brass at Facebook to show their faces in order to reverse the public perception that the offering was just one big money suck. And since he scored big on the IPO -- his original investment was $500,000 in 2004 -- Thiel can do a lot to help on that score.