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Theranos: How Did a $9 Billion Health Tech Startup End Up DOA?

by Ernesto Dal Bó and Guo Xu

Stanford University drop-out Elizabeth Holmes hoped to disrupt the traditional $75 billion blood-testing business with only one drop from a finger prick instead of several vials of blood. The revolutionary claim of Theranos’ founder was that her groundbreaking technology enabled a full range of laboratory tests from a tiny sample. The Silicon Valley company, founded in 2003, assembled a powerful board and high-profile investors, becoming a media darling valued at $9 billion. By 2018, federal prosecutors filed criminal charges alleging Holmes had defrauded investors and mislead doctors and patients. The health technology company crashed from unicorn status leaving questions about what factors silenced doubters and enticed high-profile investors.


Pub Date: February 1, 2021

Discipline: Ethics

Subjects: Innovation, Health Care, Ethics, Technology

Product #: B5968-PDF-ENG

Industry: Technology, Health Care

Geography: Silicon Valley

Length: 6 page(s)

Berkeley Haas Case Series
Berkeley Haas Case Series The Berkeley Haas Case Series is a collection of business case studies written by faculty members at the Haas School of Business. Cases are conceived, developed, written, and published throughout the year, on subjects ranging from entrepreneurship and strategy to finance and marketing. Each case includes a teaching note for use in the classroom.


Berkeley Haas Case Series

A new collection of business case studies from Berkeley Haas

The aim of the Berkeley Haas Case Series is to incite business innovation by clarifying disruptive trends and questioning the status quo.

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