Prominent conservative venture capitalists including Peter Thiel and J.D. Vance are investing in free speech-oriented video streaming site Rumble Video, the company said Wednesday.
The deal, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, marks PayPal and Palantir co-founder Peter Thiel’s first investment in a social media company since he bought a large stake of Facebook as an early investor in 2004. It also means that Thiel is supporting a competitor to Facebook while he sits on Facebook’s board.
The round values Rumble at around $500 million, The Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. That represents a major boost for Rumble, which aims to challenge the dominance of platforms that conservatives claim unfairly restrict free speech, including YouTube and Facebook.
Rumble’s users include popular right-wing internet personalities like Donald Trump Jr., former Trump strategist Steve Bannon, commentator Dan Bongino and writer Dinesh D’Souza.
Theil takes a large stake in Facebook in 2004.AFP via Getty Images
“Rumble is in a really good position to be competition to the larger incumbent platforms,” Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski told the Post.
Along with Thiel, the investment round is being led by “Hillbilly Elegy” author J.D. Vance’s Ohio-based venture-capital fund Narya Capital. The