David Choe, the artist who painted the Facebook Incorporation building in 2005, was not paid in cash. Instead, he was given stock and today the same stock is worth $200 million.
David Choe was persuaded by Facebook's founding president Sean Parker to do the work in exchange for stock when the company was just a start-up. Choe asked for $60,000 to decorate the entire Facebook building, but Parker convinced him to take stock instead, valueWalk.com reported.
Choe related the experience during an interview with America's famous TV and radio personality Howard Stern in 2014. He said that Parker convinced him to take the stock despite a lack of assurance that it would be worth anything.
At the time, Parker was a "skinny, nerdy kid" who told Choe that he was going to raise money for the company. "He got a super-sharp haircut, started working out every day, got tan, got a nice suit. I was like, 'This guy's crazy', Choe was quoted as saying.
However, Parker's work paid off after he convinced PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel and LinkedIn Corp co-founder Reid Hoffman to get on board and invest in Facebook.
"I believed in Sean. I didn't care about Facebook. I'm like, this kid knows something, and I'm going to bet my money on him," Choe said.
Choe claims that he knew that Facebook would at least be able to give him the $60,000 he had originally asked for, because he was present when Thiel decided to invest in the company.