STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

The rise and fall of Elizabeth Holmes

Theranos went from one of the most lauded "unicorn" tech startups in Silicon Valley to a company crippled by scandal....

Posted: Jun 17, 2018 1:21 AM
Updated: Jun 17, 2018 1:21 AM

Theranos went from one of the most lauded "unicorn" tech startups in Silicon Valley to a company crippled by scandal.

Elizabeth Holmes, Theranos' founder and CEO, dropped out of Stanford University to launch the company in 2003 as a cheaper, more efficient alternative to traditional medical tests. It promised patients the ability to test for conditions like cancer and diabetes with just a few drops of blood.

But questions swirled over its testing and technology. Investigations ensued. And on Friday, Holmes was charged by the US government with wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. She faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

Here's a look back at the rise and fall of Elizabeth Holmes and her blood testing startup.

2014

- September 29, 2014: Holmes is named one of the richest women in America by Forbes. The outlet reports she owns a 50% stake in the startup, which is valued at $9 billion.

- December 15, 2014: The New Yorker reports Theranos has raised more than $400 million and it counts Oracle's Larry Ellison among its investors.

2015

- October 12, 2015: The New York Times names Holmes one of its "Five Visionary Tech Entrepreneurs who are changing the world." But shortly after, headlines for Holmes and Theranos take on a different tone.

- October 16, 2015: The Wall Street Journal publishes a front-page story about the accuracy of Theranos' tests, claiming the company used traditional lab machines instead of its own.

- October 27, 2015: An FDA report cites numerous concerns with the company, calling its proprietary blood-collection vial an "uncleared medical device."

2016

- January 27, 2016: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services sends Theranos a letter saying it was not complying with federal blood-testing rules and that patients were in "immediate jeopardy." It gives the company 10 days to address the issues.

- July 7, 2016: Regulators ban Theranos from running a lab for two years and revoke its certification.

- October 5, 2016: Theranos closes clinical labs and wellness centers and lays off 340 employees. Holmes says the company will pivot and focus on making a small, automated testing machine.

- March 3, 2016: A federal agency releases a redacted 121-page report based on a previous inspection of the Theranos labs, citing serious issues with the company's equipment and quality control.

- May 2016: Theranos president and COO Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani steps down from the company.

- June 1, 2016: Forbes revises its estimate of Holmes' net worth from $4.5 billion to $0. It also lowered its valuation for the company from $9 billion to $800 million.

- June, 2016: Drug chain Walgreens, which had Theranos centers at 40 locations, pulls out of its three year partnership with the company.

- August 1, 2016: Holmes tries to revive the company by presenting the company's mini testing laboratory, called miniLab, at a conference for the American Association for Clinical Chemistry. Attendees were skeptical.

- October 10, 2016: Major Theranos investor Partner Fund Management sues the company, accusing it of securities fraud. The lawsuit was settled in May, 2017, for an undisclosed amount.

- November 8, 2016: Walgreens sues Theranos for $140 million, alleging breach of contract. The lawsuit was settled August, 2017, for an undisclosed amount.

2017

- January 6, 2017: Theranos lays off another 155 employees -- 41% of its staff.

- January 17, 2017: The Wall Street Journal reports that Theranos failed a second regulatory lab inspection in September, and that the company was closing its last blood testing location as a result.

- April 17, 2017: Theranos settles with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, paying the government agency $30,000, giving $4.65 million to Arizona customers, and vowing to stay out of blood testing for two years.

2018

- March 14, 2018: The SEC levies civil charges against Holmes and former Theranos president Ramesh Balwanifor an "elaborate, years-long fraud in which they exaggerated or made false statements about the company's technology, business, and financial performance." Holmes agrees to a settlement that requires her to pay a $500,000 penalty, sidelines her from decision making at Theranos and bans her from top leadership positions at publicly traded companies for a decade.

- June 15, 2018: Holmes and Balwani are charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and nine counts of wire fraud. They are accused of carrying out a multi-million dollar a scheme to defraud investors, doctors and patients.

If convicted, they each face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, plus restitution for each count of wire fraud and each conspiracy count, according to the US Attorney's office.

--This is an updated version of an article that was published on March 14, 2018.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 446380

Reported Deaths: 5995
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin927471474
Ramsey39820736
Dakota32876338
Anoka30877363
Washington20066227
Stearns17813187
St. Louis13609241
Scott1191796
Wright11570104
Olmsted1041375
Sherburne818965
Carver692436
Clay650280
Rice604168
Kandiyohi553471
Blue Earth538933
Crow Wing481374
Otter Tail454466
Chisago450832
Benton418685
Winona387246
Douglas373466
Nobles368746
Mower363329
Goodhue345358
Polk327956
McLeod324245
Morrison311144
Beltrami309447
Lyon300636
Becker284139
Itasca284043
Isanti281641
Carlton278543
Steele27229
Pine266013
Freeborn243420
Todd231630
Nicollet223836
Brown214534
Mille Lacs213646
Le Sueur208815
Cass207323
Meeker199233
Waseca188916
Wabasha16953
Martin169326
Roseau165416
Hubbard149238
Redwood139527
Renville137139
Houston135613
Dodge13384
Chippewa130932
Cottonwood126818
Fillmore12245
Wadena119616
Rock109712
Sibley10837
Aitkin107633
Watonwan10638
Faribault104616
Pennington98815
Kanabec97418
Pipestone93923
Yellow Medicine93514
Murray8785
Jackson85210
Swift83118
Pope7375
Marshall70315
Stevens6978
Clearwater68514
Lac qui Parle65716
Lake63215
Wilkin6229
Koochiching59310
Lincoln4821
Big Stone4553
Unassigned43668
Grant4298
Norman4238
Mahnomen4107
Kittson37219
Red Lake3164
Traverse2503
Lake of the Woods1901
Cook1140

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 303464

Reported Deaths: 4269
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk45396448
Linn17695274
Scott15387163
Black Hawk13659236
Woodbury12953175
Johnson1204749
Dubuque11312150
Pottawattamie8942112
Dallas882171
Story863834
Webster467571
Cerro Gordo463568
Sioux453756
Clinton448861
Warren438838
Marshall425761
Buena Vista391929
Muscatine386777
Des Moines380941
Plymouth348968
Wapello341698
Jasper320458
Lee314430
Marion302152
Jones270449
Henry263430
Carroll253434
Bremer242248
Crawford228522
Boone216417
Washington214531
Benton208844
Jackson191131
Mahaska190736
Tama185857
Dickinson184226
Delaware172336
Kossuth171343
Clay166019
Wright163024
Fayette160022
Buchanan158323
Hamilton157929
Winneshiek155119
Harrison154762
Hardin154229
Cedar151819
Clayton150748
Butler146824
Page143715
Cherokee138227
Floyd138036
Mills136016
Lyon133832
Poweshiek132424
Hancock129024
Allamakee126927
Iowa123922
Calhoun12209
Grundy120226
Jefferson119524
Madison11899
Winnebago118529
Mitchell115734
Louisa114330
Cass112641
Chickasaw110612
Sac110615
Emmet110331
Appanoose109838
Union108122
Humboldt104219
Guthrie102424
Franklin101618
Shelby101426
Unassigned9160
Palo Alto9019
Keokuk84325
Montgomery84022
Howard82819
Monroe80818
Clarke7847
Pocahontas77211
Ida74030
Davis68921
Greene6887
Adair68620
Lucas6488
Osceola6349
Monona63316
Worth5993
Taylor5919
Fremont5046
Van Buren49412
Decatur4804
Ringgold4269
Wayne41421
Audubon4118
Adams2953
Rochester/St. Mary'S
Cloudy
22° wxIcon
Hi: 23° Lo: 20°
Feels Like: 13°
Mason City
Cloudy
20° wxIcon
Hi: 25° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 10°
Albert Lea
Partly Cloudy
19° wxIcon
Hi: 22° Lo: 16°
Feels Like: 13°
Austin
Cloudy
21° wxIcon
Hi: 23° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 15°
Charles City
Partly Cloudy
19° wxIcon
Hi: 25° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 9°
A big temperature swing is on the way
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Saturday's local highlights and scores

Image

John Marshall ready for 2021

Image

Is the City of Rochester paying men and women equally?

Image

LWVMN asks for "truth and consequences" for state lawmakers

Image

Sports Overtime Part 2

Image

Sports Overtime Part 1

Image

Plans for polar plunge

Image

Equal work and equal pay.

Image

Aaron's Friday Night Forecast

Image

Mega Millions jackpot soars to $750 million

Community Events