Alex Gibney’s narrative on Elizabeth Holmes and her blood-testing company that wasn’t, Theranos, will air on HBO. Gibney’s previous documentary subject incorporate Enron and Scientology.
“The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley,” addresses the story of how Holmes dropped out of Stanford, established Theranos to make diagnostic blood tests progressively accessible, sufficiently raised money to give the company a $9 billion valuation, and saw the company dissolve once John Carreyrou of the Wall Street Journal reporting on problems with the company’s blood-testing devices.
Theranos and Holmes have turned into new reference point in the discussion of Silicon Valley startups trying to hack healthcare. For some time, Theranos had not distributed any friend evaluated learns about its technology, a notice sign to researchers. Healthcare startups are still not distributing much peer-reviewed research, but the industry now has to reckon with Theranos’ example.
Holmes surely had the personal charisma to look down cynics. As a Forbes journalist, Matthew Herper had questions about the company and asked hard questions interviewing her onstage at the 2015 Forbes Under 30 Summit. But after the interview he was left, “briefly fantasizing about what it would be like to work at Theranos, something I’ve never done after interviewing a biotech CEO,” he wrote last year.
Prior to her fall, Holmes was quickly at the highest point of Forbes’ most extravagant independent women list with a total assets of $4.5 billion, in view of her 50% stake in Theranos. Only the following year Forbes cut her net worth to zero, after Carreyrou’s reporting made it clear the company’s products fell short of its claims.
Theranos whistleblower Tyler Shultz, in front of an audience at Forbes’2017 Under 30 Summit, said that after he started working at the company it became clear that “everyone kind of knew that this thing didn’t actually live up to what we were claiming.”
“[Holmes] is extremely convincing, really makes you feel she cares so much about you, about helping the world,” Shultz said, “selling her vision all the time.”