Former Safeway CEO Steve Burd testified in the ongoing Elizabeth Holmes criminal fraud trial, pointing out repeated delays with Theranos' raising red flags in their blood-testing machine about his company's failed multi-million partnership with the said company. Burd revealed deadlines were missed again and again, often with no explanation.
Steve Burd Testifies About Theranos
According to the story by CNBC, Burd kept asking for details, and it was frustrating as they tried to help Theranos any way they could. Burd's testimony actually came the exact same day that a certain juror in the trial noted that she would have a hard time sending Holmes to prison, which prompted the judge to excuse her from the said case.
Safeway notably spent over $300 million in order to build clinics in hundreds of different grocery stores in anticipation of the new blood-testing technology. The whole idea of the partnership was that while shopping, people could simply get a blood test result before they leave.
Who is Steve Burd and How was He Drawn to Holmes?
Burd has been CEO of Safeway for two decades, and he even testified that he was initially charmed by Holmes as well as her vision to be able to create cheaper and faster blood testing technology for his own customers. Burd notes that he was very impressed.
As also reported by WLFI, Burd noted that there are only a few people in business he had met that he could call charismatic. He noted that Holmes was charismatic and smart and was doing the hardest thing one could do in business which was to create a whole enterprise from the start.
What is Elizabeth Holmes Case?
The former Theranos CEO is now up against 12 counts of wire fraud as well as conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Federal prosecutors now allege that Holmes and her top executive Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani were reportedly engaged in a multi-million dollar scheme that aimed to defraud investors and patients. Both of them have not pleaded guilty.
Burd also testified that he actually viewed the partnership along with Theranos as a type of opportunity for Safeway to expand into the whole healthcare world. With repeated delays with the miniLabs, Theranos' very own blood-testing machine then raised some red flags.
Burd Testifies Against Holmes
Holmes was banned from running the lab for two years back in 2016 as the case is still continuing to this day. Burd then testified that Holmes had demonstrated the device at a certain board meeting. They then ran a whole prostate-antigen test on a certain board member. Burd then said that he recalled that blood was drawn, went into the machine, but no results were given to them.
The testimony of Burd also includes that Holmes had not disclosed to him that she was actually in a romantic relationship with Balwani. Burd then noted that it raises the question of what else could be hidden. Holmes is fighting back by questioning the ex-Theranos lab director's credibility.
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Written by Urian B.