In 2012 Theranos hired the renowned marketing firm TBWA/Chiat/Day on a retainer of $6 million, which soon increased to $11 million. The company still did not have a working product after a decade of work and hundreds of millions of dollars spent. Still, Theranos decided to advertise to the masses what was essentially a fairytale: the notion that they could run hundreds of blood tests on a single drop (or just a few drops) of blood. As part of their work together, Elizabeth Holmes, the company’s founder, was front and center in the media and starred in a bizarre, yet hypnotizing, commercial shot by celebrated documentary film director Errol Morris (Thin Blue Line, Gates of Heaven, Tabloid, Vernon, Florida.
Ian Gibbons killed himself on May 16, 2013, after a series of disastrous experiences at the fallen sci-tech company that was actually more sci-fi. Before becoming the chief scientist of Theranos in 2005, Ian had spent 30 years working developing diagnostic and therapeutic products, including at the company Biotrack. His specialty was immunoassays, which are tests that look for molecules in a substance like blood or other body fluids. This is exactly what Theranos was purporting to do, so his expertise should have been invaluable.
After Ana Arriola left Theranos they’ve gone on to work with Meta (Facebook,) Sony, Samsung, Playstation, and Microsoft. At the time they started working at Theranos, however, they’d made the bold decision to leave Apple and a whopping 15,000 shares of Apple stock. Once they came on to Theranos, they eventually realized that the product at the heart of Theranos, the Edison machine that Ana had been tasked with improving the design of, didn’t work. They were just one of many powerful and influential people duped by Elizabeth’s aggressive drive to succeed at any cost.
Elizabeth Holmes, the former CEO of the closed health firm Theranos, is currently on trial for nine counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud by the SEC because Theranos gave customers of their blood tests falsified results. She was indicted with former Theranos COO and former boyfriend Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, who had left the company in 2016. Elizabeth is on trial right now (fall 2021,) and Sunny faces trial in 2022. Theranos was founded in 2003 with the name Real-Time Cures, but Sunny did not come on board until 2009. Athough Sunny and Elizabeth were dating and living together at the time, they tried to hide this information from everyone.
One of the most fascinating details of the disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes’ saga is her voice. It’s oddly deep, but that isn’t strange on its own merit. Many women have naturally deep voices. There is something about Elizabeth’s that just sounds off, it’s an uncanny voice that doesn’t really sound like anyone’s natural voice, though it does kind of sound like Mira Sorvino’s put-on voice in Romy and Michele’s High school Reunion. There is also evidence to suggest that her voice is, in fact, fake. Some of it is heresay from those who knew her before she developed the public persona she used to market her company’s outlandish claims, but there are a few times when she publicly slipped up and we can get a glimpse of what she naturally sounds like.