Corruption Scandal Former Austrian Chancellor Kurz Lands Silicon Valley Job: Report

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 19: Austrian Chancellor in waiting Sebastian Kurz arrives ahead of a European Council Meeting at the Council of the European Union building on October 19, 2017 in Brussels, Belgium. Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May attends along with the other 27 members Heads of State. Under discussion …
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Former Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has reportedly accepted a “managerial” role in Silicon Valley after resigning over allegations of corruption earlier this year.

Sebastian Kurz, 35, who became the youngest Chancellor of Austria in 2017, has reportedly landed top job in Silicon Valley, and is expected to split his time jet setting between San Francisco, Vienna, Germany and Switzerland.

It is not currently known what organisation Kurz will be joining, but it is believed to be a “globally active” technology firm, the Austrian paper the Kronen Zeitung reported.

Kurz is said to have already signed the contract — the details of which will be made public soon — and he will start his new job in February.

The former Austrian leader was dubbed a “whizz-kid” when he was first elected as chancellor aged just 31 in 2017, but resigned in disgrace in October following his office being raided by Austria’s Economic and Corruption Prosecutor’s Office.

Kurz is facing allegations of corruption that he, along with nine others, used government money to purchase politically positive media coverage between 2016 and 2018.

Kurz’s time in government spanned ten years, having first entered government in 2011 as secretary for integration for the liberal-conservative Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP).

He served as chancellor of the country twice, first from December 2017 to May 2019 and then again from January 2020 to October 2021. Kurz finished his time in government in a coalition with Austria’s left-leaning Green Party.

Following the announcement of his reported move to Silicon Valley, Kurz posted a message on social media in English wishing his followers a “Merry Christmas”.

The move by the former Austrian chancellor is reminiscent of former Deputy British Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who joined Facebook as their Vice-president of Global Affairs and Communications in 2018.

The former Liberal Democrat leader was given the role at Facebook following a string of embarrassing electoral defeats, inculding losing his seat in Parliament to the Labour Party in 2017.

Under Clegg, the Liberal Democrats also experienced their most embarrassing electoral defeat in their history during the 2015 General Election, when their number of seats held in the House of Commons fell from 52 to just eight.

Clegg’s appointment as the VP of Global Affairs received widespread criticism from conservative figures from Britain, including Brexit boss turned news host Nigel Farage, who warned at the time about the potential ramifications on free speech as a consequence of Clegg joining Facebook.

Responding to the announcement of Clegg’s new role Farage wrote in October of 2018: “Facebook have appointed globalist propagandist Nick Clegg as Vice President for Global Affairs, this is bad news for free speech”.

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