Bad Blood
John Carreyrou

by

Jack Shields

Chapter 8
Summary

Even though Theranos had Walgreens and Safeway to support them, they were still lacking the technology requested in order to perform all the tests they imagined. In order to achieve that goal, she hired Kent Frankovich, who was an engineer, and Greg Baney, who would work on what she called the minilab. After a period of working for the company both of them found out that something was off. The first sign of trouble manifested when Elizabeth began behaving erratically. Rejecting that the device they were planning to invent was close to impossible to be created, Elizabeth and Sunny presented it as a device ready to hit the markets and help people accurately identify important information about their health in the comfort of their own homes, even though the device itself was still just a prototype. Sunny also used to fire the employees for unprofessional and arbitrary reasons such as for not working as much as he wanted. The last straw for Greg was the moment when Elizabeth hired his brother together with his frat mates to work for Theranos. These individuals had no experience and no knowledge in this field but they were treated as being more important than all the engineer team. Even though the companies’ number of employees reached 150, the idea promoted by Theranos had deviated so far from what Greg envisioned and expected regarding its execution initially that he elected to resign than to stay with what he viewed as a disaster in the making.

Analysis

This chapter gives us furthers details about Elizabeth and Sunny. They hid their relationship from the other members of the boards because of the obvious consequences it could have on their credibility, but people inevitably found out over time. Elizabeth's passion for pursuing Steve Jobs’ image became even more evident after his death when she insisted to raise a flag on the companies roof to commemorate the founder’s passing away. After that, she started imitating him and dressing like him. Soon the companies’ employees managed to find out that she was actually reading a book regarding Steve's life and started copying him based on what was written in the book. Elizabeth's obsession, egotistical behaviors, and paranoia became clearer to everyone when she called the police on an ex-employee for refusing to sign a non-disclosure agreement.

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