What Theranos can teach you about silos

Silicon Valley's $9bn scandal holds a lesson on what happens when people don’t talk to each other.

by Stephen Jones

Elizabeth Holmes was meant to be the next Steve Jobs. By replacing medically-administered blood tests with a simple finger prick, her company Theranos was going to change the world. 

It was a promise that saw the company reach a market value of $9bn and Holmes become the youngest female entrepreneur to earn a billion dollars. The only problem was that the technology didn’t work. 

After a Wall Street Journal investigation uncovered the fact, as outlined in John Carreyrou’s 2018 book Bad Blood (and a more recent documentary), Theranos collapsed. Holmes and her former boyfriend and Theranos COO ‘Sunny’ Balwani now face 12 charges of wire fraud and potentially 20 years in prison when the trial returns to court in 2021. 

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