The Elizabeth Holmes fraud trial is scheduled to begin today in San Jose, California. Holmes is charged with dozens of charges related to her role as CEO in the Theranos company. Holmes promoted Theranos as a company that could “change the world”. The 37-year-old founder has pleaded not guilty to defrauding investors.
The Theranos Company
Holmes promoted Theranos as a company that could perform a multitude of medical tasks using a small blood sample from a finger prick. Overall, investors gave Theranos $700 million dollars which made Holmes a multi-billionaire in her early thirties. Holmes was promoted around the Silicon Valley as the next Steve Jobs. She was often seen wearing the same clothes that Jobs’ was famous for – jeans and a black turtle neck sweater.
The Problems With Theranos
The problem with Theranos was that the technology didn’t work. After taking in hundreds of millions of dollars of investor money Holmes now stands accused of defrauding investors and faces 20 years in prison. High-profile venture capitalists such as Oracle founder Larry Ellison and multi-billionaire Betsy DeVos, heir to the Amway fortune were among the high profile investors Holmes was able to attract to invest in Theranos.
Elaine Allan, BA, MBA
Technology and Business Blogger
Vancouver, BC, Canada