RIP Theranos: The sinking data trail the ill-fated company leaves behind

2 weeks ago by Joshua Fruhlinger in News, Trends

Theranos ($THERANOS), the infamous blood-testing company that was once worth $9 billion, is "out of time," according to CEO David Taylor.

The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that Taylor sent an email to shareholders saying that despite attempts to be bought out by 80 potential suitors, the company is shutting down.

It leaves behind a data imprint that reflects a very clearly sinking company.

It's rare that we see a LinkedIn employee count graph that's sloping to a zero point, but in Theranos, we see a company that hasn't just been losing investors, but also employees who say they work for them.

For the past year, the company's overall rating — according to anonymous employees posting to workplace review site Glassdoor — has been below average. It saw a slight rise in early 2018, perhaps when there was hope left for the company, but it has since sunk to 2.8 out of 5.

Aforementioned CEO David Taylor's approval rating hovered around 52% until Glassdoor shut down the metric after July 7, which it will sometimes do when a company is going through a leadership transition or time of crisis.

Sidenote for the uninitiated: Taylor's predecessor, Elizabeth Holmes, is facing fraud charges after the Wall Street Journal  reported in 2015 that the company's breakthrough technology was nothing more than smoke and mirrors. She was indicted on federal wire fraud charges in June, including charges that she defrauded investors, doctors, and patients.

As for its business outlook rating — how employees believe the company will fare in the next six months — Theranos has been on a slow dive for over a year. This rating did see a jump in December 2017, which coincides with an announcement that more than 76,000 Arizonans would receive $4.6 million in refunds for blood tests they had purchased from Theranos. This was followed by $100 million in new debt funding from Fortress Capital around Christmas 2017 that allowed the company to narrowly dodge bankruptcy, at least for some time.

But since then, the company has been on a slow decline to today, where it leaves behind a $9 billion scam, an indicted CEO, frustrated investors, and, as the data shows, very unhappy ex-employees.

Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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