Peter Thiel to Donate $1.25 Million in Support of Donald Trump

SAN FRANCISCO — Peter Thiel, true to his reputation as the most contrarian soul in Silicon Valley, is doubling down on Donald J. Trump.

The prominent supporter of the Republican candidate in the high-tech community, Mr. Thiel is making his first donation in support of Mr. Trump’s election. He will give $1.25 million through a combination of super PAC donations and funds given directly to the campaign, a person close to the investor said on Saturday.

The donation puts the billionaire investor high on a list of big Trump contributors. One of the biggest donors is Robert Mercer of the hedge fund Renaissance Technologies. He and his daughter Rebekah Mercer have given $15.5 million in support of the Republican candidate’s election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Geoffrey Palmer, a Los Angeles developer, has donated $2 million.

Mr. Thiel, who spoke at the Republican National Convention, Is unfazed by the storm around the candidate in the last week.

The source, who requested anonymity, said the investor feels the country needs fixing, and Mr. Trump can do it. A spokesman for Mr. Thiel declined to comment. A spokesman for Mr. Trump did not immediately respond to a message for comment.

petertheil_small Peter Thiel to Donate $1.25 Million in Support of Donald Trump Activism

The candidate and Silicon Valley began on a bad note, with Mr. Trump lashing out at Amazon, Apple and other large companies. His position on immigration is the opposite of the tech industry’s.

Silicon Valley has been forced to confront its lack of diversity in recent years.  Brian Krzanich, the chief executive of Intel, In a Twitter message said he did not intend to endorse either presidential candidate.

Mr. Thiel, 49, emigrated from Germany as a child. He co-founded PayPal and Palantir, which focuses on pattern-finding software. His net worth is estimated at about $2.7 billion. Ever since Mr. Thiel was reported to be a California delegate for Mr. Trump, questions have swirled about why he had not given any of his wealth to help his candidate.

At the convention, Mr. Thiel sounded a populist tone rarely heard among entrepreneurs.

“Across the country, wages are flat. Americans get paid less today than 10 years ago,” he said. “But health care and college tuition cost more every year. Meanwhile, Wall Street bankers inflate bubbles in everything from government bonds to Hillary Clinton’s speaking fees. Our economy is broken. If you’re watching me right now, you understand this better than any politician in Washington D.C.”

He also said he was “proud to be gay,” the first time a Republican convention speaker had made such a statement.

Mr. Thiel was identified as gay nine years ago by a blog owned by Gawker Media. He said writers at Gawker should be identified “as terrorists, not as writers or reporters,” and he eventually funded the wrestler Hulk Hogan’s successful lawsuit against the site. Gawker’s flagship website was closed by its new owner, Univision, in August.