OLD Media Moves

The WSJ reporter who took down Theranos

May 24, 2018

Posted by Chris Roush

John Carreyrou

Yashar Ali of New York magazine profiles Wall Street Journal reporter John Carreyrou, the reporter whose stories led to the demise of blood-testing company Theranos.

Ali writes, “The reporting that brought down a unicorn is contained in 22 small notebooks stacked neatly in a guest bedroom in the Brooklyn apartment Carreyrou shares with his wife, Molly Schuetz, an editor at Bloomberg News, and three children. Carreyrou, who grew up in France with a French journalist father and an American mother, has already won two Pulitzer Prizes, both shared with colleagues. But he has sole ownership over the Theranos story to a degree that is rare in journalism.

“‘Theranos was a combination of fraud, with hubris mixed with incompetence,’ Carreyrou told me in his precise, economical manner. ‘Some part of Sunny and Elizabeth, I believe, knew they were committing fraud. Knew that they were lying to investors, to a lot of people. But part of them also were convinced that the Theranos technology that they were working on — which they knew was still a work-in-progress — that it actually was revolutionary. That it actually was great,’ he says.

“Having met Holmes twice — first at Theranos headquarters to discuss proposed health-care legislation (I worked in politics at the time), then at David Boies’s 75th birthday party in Las Vegas — I can attest to how charming and captivating she was in person. Modeling herself on Steve Jobs, down to the simple uniform of a turtleneck and slacks, she sold her vision masterfully. She spoke in a voice that was so deep it would take people by surprise; Bad Blood reveals that she may have been intentionally lowering it by a couple octaves. At one of her meetings with Rupert Murdoch, according to Carreyrou, the mogul was stunned by Holmes’s phalanx of bodyguards — Murdoch travels with only one.”

Read more here.

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