Peter Thiel, one of the few high-profile conservative figures in Silicon Valley, is packing his bags to leave.

The billionaire investor is scaling back his role in the tech industry because he feels alienated by the liberal-leaning political climate in the San Francisco area and fears the effects of increased regulation, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Thiel reportedly is planning to move his home and investment firms Thiel Capital and Thiel Foundation to Los Angeles, where he will also create a new media outlet focused on conservative topics. A libertarian, he has long been vocal about his distaste for the political climate of the Northern California tech community. During a debate at Stanford University last month, he described Silicon Valley as "a one-party state" and said, "That's when you get in trouble politically in our society, when you're all in one side."

Thiel faced heavy criticism last year after backing Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election and serving on his transition team. Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix and a fellow Facebook board member, called Thiel's support of Trump "catastrophically bad judgment," according to an email obtained by the Journal.

While Thiel plans to keep some of his ventures, including Founders Fund and Mithril Capital, in San Francisco, he's considering leaving the board of Facebook, where he's been a director since 2005, according to the Journal.

Thiel has left the boards of Zenefits and Asana, sold the majority of his stake in Twilio, and parted ways with startup incubator Y Combinator in the past two years. 

Published on: Feb 15, 2018