As a venture capitalist and entrepreneur, Thiel has been involved with some of the most dynamic companies to emerge from Silicon Valley in the past decade. Thiel's first start-up was PayPal, which he co-founded in 1998, and led as Chairman and CEO. After eBay acquired PayPal for $1.5 billion in 2002, Thiel founded Clarium Capital Management, a global macro hedge fund. As a venture capitalist in his personal capacity, Thiel funded companies like Facebook, where he was that company's first outside investor and director. Thiel's contributions to technology, entrepreneurship, and finance have been widely recognized, including by the World Economic Forum, which honored Thiel as a Young Global Leader, and by BusinessWeek, which named him one of the 25 most influential people on the Web.