Have you ever gotten a tweet you can't explain? Have you ever looked over a quarterly report from Twitter (TWTR) and wondered why the pages were stained with the unmistakable orange of Cheetos? If so, Peter Thiel thinks he know the reason, and he made his thoughts perfectly clear in a Wednesday morning interview on CNBC:
“Twitter is hard to evaluate. They have a lot of potential. It's a horribly mismanaged company – probably a lot of pot-smoking going on there – but it's such a solid franchise it may even work with all that.”
Not many people would toss such an accusation at the managers of such a large and growing social media company, but Thiel, an early Facebook (FB) investor who co-founded PayPal with Elon Musk and Reid Hoffman, (the three are sometimes referred to as the “PayPal Mafia”) was just getting warmed up.
Thiel went on to argue (his least controversial point) that Google (GOOGL) was a better value than Apple (AAPL) despite his concerns over European antitrust actions. He then tore into Uber, a ride sharing service, calling it the most “ethically challenged” company in Silicon Valley, and all but accusing the company of unfair competitive practices with regard to Lyft, the ride sharing service that Thiel holds a stake in.
Finally Thiel, who is gay, speculated as to the prevalence of gay CEOs, suggesting that there were quite a few of them in their 50's or 60's would never come out, but that many would do so in the coming decades. You may love Thiel or hate him, but it must be allowed that Wall Street would be a duller place without him.
Julian Close has been a business writer since the first day of the twenty-first century, having written for PRA International and the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping. He graduated from Davidson College in 1993 and received a Master of Arts in Teaching from Mary Baldwin College in 2011. He became a stockbroker in 1993, but now works for Fresh Brewed Media and uses his powers only for good. You can see closing trades for all Julian's long and short positions and track his long term performance via twitter: @JulianClose_MIC.