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The PayPal Mafia’s Golden Touch


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Folks don't realize that Musk wasn't the only one of the Pay Pal group to change the world.

 

If you want to see where a tech sector is going, or wonder what a unicorn is today, this article has it.

 

Excerpt:

 

"The ride-hailing app Uber, the apartment rental site Airbnb and other darlings of the next generation of Silicon Valley start-ups are reshaping the way people use the web. They are also changing expectations about just how much money private companies can raise while still staying out of the public markets.

 

Known as the unicorns, these private technology companies are worth $1 billion or more, thanks to an influx of cash from venture capital firms, hedge funds, private equity firms and mutual funds.

 

But alongside the Wall Street money flowing into these companies’ coffers, a familiar set of names is operating behind the scenes by advising, investing in and, in some cases, founding the unicorns.

 

The PayPal Mafia — a nickname given a group of alumni of PayPal, the payments company that went public in 2002 and was acquired by eBay — has its hands in many, if not most, of today’s most valuable private tech companies.

 

Their enduring influence, more than a decade after they made their first fortunes, speaks to the tightknit social fabric of Silicon Valley’s technology industry, and to the trust new entrepreneurs place in those who have succeeded before them. And now, the PayPal group’s close ties with the current crop of unicorns — a collection of some of the most valuable technology start-ups ever seen — suggest its influence is undiminished.

 

Peter Thiel, a co-founder and former chief executive of PayPal, is an investor in companies including Airbnb, the big-data company Palantir, the spaceflight provider SpaceX and the payments company Stripe, four of the most valuable tech companies in Silicon Valley today.

 

Jeremy Stoppelman, the former vice president for engineering at PayPal, has personally invested in the payments provider Square, Uber, Pinterest, Airbnb and Palantir.

 

And Keith Rabois, the former head of business development at PayPal who is now a partner at Khosla Ventures, holds shares in Airbnb, Stripe and Palantir, to name a few.

 

The shared experience of PayPal alumni makes their advice — and money — particularly valuable to young entrepreneurs. An online payments provider founded in the 1990s, the company succeeded despite going public shortly after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, even as the economy was still reeling from both the attack and the collapse of the dot-com bubble."

 

Their stories, how and why they invest are detailed. Amazing what that group did and does to this day. The rest is in the full article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/02/business/dealbook/the-paypal-mafias-golden-touch.html?emc=edit_tu_20150402&nl=technology&nlid=36852580&_r=0

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