Bad Blood: The Truth Behind the Fall of Theranos

Bad Blood book Summary

Bad Blood is a story behind the destruction of a multi-billion-dollar tech startup that was co-founded by Elizabeth Holmes. The book unleashes the story behind the rise and fall of Theranos, a tech start-up in Silicon Valley. The book also places prime importance on how the CEO of Theranos, Elizabeth Holmes, manipulated so many people to believe in her abilities. She even made it to the cover of Forbes and Fortune on the basis of her manipulative and monstrous schemes. This story came into existence when the author, John Carreyou, who is also a well-renowned journalist, came forward with the truth about Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos and published the story about their deceit in the Wall Street Journal.

The idea that that turned Elizabeth into a female Steve Jobs

Now, let’s delve into the story of Elizabeth Holmes and her devious schemes. At the tender age of 19, Elizabeth Holmes’ founded a multibillion-dollar biotech startup called Theranos along with Shanuk Roy, her classmate at Stanford University.  Because of her confidence and ideas, she was deemed as the female Steve Jobs who had the potential to revolutionize the medical world with her ideas. She pitched the idea to multiple investors and, by her power of manipulation, charmed them into investing in her deceptive startup. The idea of a startup was generated from her fear of needles.

The start-up was about inventing Edison, a wearable patch with microneedles that would diagnose the patient’s blood for multiple diseases. It was popularly known as a miracle machine. Let us dive into the details of this miracle machine.  It is a tiny, convenient blood testing machine that was designed to detect two hundred common diseases. Another benefit of Edison was that it was super inexpensive.  But the design didn't work. They came up with another design. After this, they even came up with another machine that could detect Herpes, HIV, and Vitamin D deficiency.

When everything was so well planned, then why was a 19-year-old girl being blamed?

Elizabeth Holmes and Shanuk Roy are to be blamed because all they did was the plan, and when it came to execution, their plan backfired. They became totally clueless when it actually came down to implementing the idea. It became practically impossible for this design to diagnose more than two hundred diseases. Many engineers were hired but technical issues remained intact and the maximum number of diseases that could be recorded were eighty. All and all the issues started increasing and scientists stated that inventing a device that could record up to 240 diseases with a single drop of blood is nearly impossible. But Elizabeth was too self-involved to think about the technical problems. She was only daydreaming about dominating the world with her female Steve Jobs status. The company’s valuation reached $9 billion by the year 2014.

Check out the Bad Blood summary to learn more about the devious plan hatched and implemented by Elizabeth Holmes and her partner. You can easily find it on various book summary websites.

Elizabeth’s bluff took Theranos’ value to $9 billion

Since the company was unable to invent what they had promised, they began misleading. They misled their investors, journalists, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by secretly using commercial blood analyzers and multiple other devices to run the tests. They got their blood tested by the same machines available in any lab in the country, and they had no idea.

Once they invited their investors to get their blood samples checked in order to gain their rapport. They slowed down the process so that their bluff could remain hidden. They then said that the results would be sent to them in no time.

They even manipulated the FDA department by claiming that their device is just an information-transmitting device, not some medical device. They invested most of their time in finding various loopholes in the system and then taking advantage of them. Things swerve not going totally as per their plan. Theranos became a subject of various controversies when they started denying basic information to their workforce. Many workers resigned when they started understanding the reality behind the miracle machine. Some workers decided to speak up but became tight-lipped because of the confidentiality agreement.

The truth that ultimately led to the destruction

If you wish to delve deep into this story, then you can read the bad blood summary, which is available on various book summary sites.

When their workforce started to resign, they hatched another plan. Theranos hired a lot of Indian workforces who were desperate to keep their jobs if they wanted to stay in the USA. But then things took an ugly turn when a critical team member and British biochemist committed suicide. He questioned the authorities about their policies because of this, he got demoted. He took this to heart and committed suicide. When this came out, journalist John Carreyou began his investigation, and the truth unfolded.

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