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Facebook Billionaire Peter Thiel Raises New Venture Fund To Invest In His ‘Utopia’

Facebook Billionaire Peter Thiel Raises New Venture Fund To Invest In His ‘Utopia’

Peter Thiel raised a $32 million fund to invest in startups in… New Zealand, reports the WSJ.

The reports say he “set up” or “opened a fund“, but this is not technically true.

As we reported more than a year ago, Thiel has been actively investing in New Zealand for many years. His New Zealand investment firm, Valar Ventures, was registered in July of 2009. So while this is a new fund, the venture firm itself is almost three years old. He described New Zealand to us as “utopia.”

Here’s what we wrote then:

Here’s a thought: maybe Peter Thiel wants to turn New Zealand into the next Silicon Valley. […]

The name of Thiel’s firm Valar Ventures comes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings universe. Thiel is a huge Tolkien fan and the Lord of the Rings movies were filmed in New Zealand. In Tolkien’s legendarium, the Valar are deities who created the world of Middle-Earth (portrayed by New Zealand in the movies) and then descended on it to help nurture its infancy and development.

Reached about this idea, Thiel said: “New Zealand is already utopia. But Silicon Valley and New Zealand can learn a lot from each other, and we want to help make that happen.”

We also wrote that “Thiel is clearly in it for the long run.” This looks like further evidence of that.


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