Economics/Class Relations

Peter Thiel thinks Elon Musk is a ‘fraud,’ and 6 other unexpected details about the billionaires’ love-hate relationship

peter thiel elon musk early paypal
Peter Thiel (left) and Elon Musk (right) pose for a 1999 story about their company PayPal.
  • Peter Thiel and Elon Musk have worked together for decades, but are polar opposites.
  • Thiel and his allies conspired against Musk and replaced him as PayPal CEO while Musk was on his honeymoon.
  • In his biography of Thiel, Max Chafkin shares surprising details about Thiel and Musk’s relationship, through all of its ups and downs.

Peter Thiel and Elon Musk have known each other for decades, all the way back to when they combined their respective online banking companies, Paypal and X, in 2002.

Since then, their relationship has seen plenty of ups and downs and their networths have grown by billions of dollars. In his book, “The Contrarian: Peter Thiel and Silicon Valley’s Pursuit of Power,” Max Chafkin takes a closer look at the complicated history of the two men, who are in many ways polar opposites.

Here are seven surprising details about Musk and Thiel that provide a glimpse into their long and often-fraught relationship.


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