The Origin Story of the PayPal Mafia
Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, and the rest of the “PayPal Mafia” are now household names who’ve reshaped technology, automobiles, space travel, and politics. But two decades ago, they were unsung entrepreneurs attempting to launch an unknown Silicon Valley startup against overwhelming odds.
Elon Musk joined with Peter Thiel, and how the two future titans would soon square off to control the company.
Organized crime attempted to ransack PayPal—but the company fought back.
Government bureaucrats and regulators ferociously tried to shut down the upstart payments service.
Turmoil pushed PayPal to the brink of insolvency before Thiel and his team turned the business around. “Our clashes with the credit card associations, the banking lobby, state regulators, foreign Mafioso, and litigation-happy lawyers significantly increased” as the company’s profile grew, writes Jackson, adding that the initial public offering that was meant to strengthen PayPal with an infusion of cash ironically attracted a rogue's gallery of foes instead.
Praise for The PayPal Wars: