Peter Thiel said he had $50 million in a personal account at Silicon Valley Bank when it collapsed, despite telling his portfolio companies to withdraw their money

Founders Fund partner Peter Thiel.Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

  • Peter Thiel told the Financial Times that he had $50 million of his own money in SVB when it collapsed.

  • Some have blamed Thiel for helping to trigger the run on SVB after he told Founders Fund companies to pull deposits.

  • On Sunday, the US government announced that all depositors in SVB would be able to access their money.

Despite advising customers to withdraw their cash from Silicon Valley Bank last week, billionaire tech mogul Peter Thiel said he had a large sum of his own money tied up in the doomed bank when it collapsed on Friday.

“I had $50 million of my own money tied up in SVB,” he told the Financial Times.

Thiel, a powerful figure in Silicon Valley and co-founder of both PayPal and Palantir, has been widely accused of adding momentum to the bank run that sparked the implosion of Silicon Valley Bank: a day before the bank’s failure, Thiel’s venture firm, Founders Fund, advised all clients to withdraw their deposits.

However, Thiel told the FT that he did not think SVB would fail last week.

Other VC firms, including Coatue Management, Union Square Ventures and Founder Collective, had similarly advised start-up clients to transfer money from SVB after the bank disclosed a $1.8 billion loss and the bank’s share price collapsed.

These firms have pushed back against accusations that they were spreading panic, saying they were providing financial advice they believed would be in the best interests of their clients.

In a statement to Axios, Founders Fund CFO Neil Ruthven said that “as of Thursday morning, it was clear that we were in the midst of a bank run, and we responded in accordance with our fiduciary duties.”

Thiel told the FT that his account was frozen on Friday when regulators stepped in and took control of the bank. However, it is available again after the US government stepped in earlier this week and subsidized all customer deposits in SVB.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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