Sector News

Report: Embattled blood-testing company Theranos lays off most remaining workers

April 11, 2018
Life sciences

Theranos has laid off most of its remaining workforce as it seeks to preserve cash and delay a bankruptcy filing for a few months, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

The layoffs reduced the Palo Alto, California-based blood-testing company’s staff from about 125 employees to fewer than two dozen workers, according to the report.

The company did not immediately return messages about the reported employee cuts.

The private company made Arizona its main testing grounds in 2013 when it began to roll out its unproven technology at Walgreens stores across metro Phoenix. The company opened 40 Theranos Wellness Centers in metro Phoenix and operated a laboratory at Arizona State University’s SkySong office complex in Scottsdale.

Theranos also successfully lobbied for a bill that allowed consumers to order any test without a doctor’s orders. Gov. Doug Ducey and legislative leaders joined Theranos founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes for a bill-signing ceremony at Theranos’ Scottsdale lab.

But media reports and government regulators began to reveal problems with the company’s blood-testing technology.

Walgreens closed the 40 wellness centers and Theranos shut down its Scottsdale lab at SkySong.

Last month, the Securities and Exchange Commission said that Holmes and the company’s former President Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani conducted an “elaborate, years-long fraud” that deceived investors by claiming the company had developed a portable blood analyzer that could perform a range of tests from a small sample of blood.

By Ken Alltucker

Source: USA Today

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