Walgreens Boots Alliance on Tuesday sued its one-time blood-testing partner Theranos, alleging breach of contract and seeking $140 million.
The Deerfield-based drugstore giant set up Theranos Wellness Centers in about 40 stores in the Phoenix area and in Palo Alto, California, in 2014. Theranos said it could perform blood tests on as little as drop of blood.
Walgreens ended the partnership in June and immediately closed all of the Theranos centers.
Theranos acknowledged in April that it was under investigation by several regulators and agencies after a series of reports by The Wall Street Journal in which former employees said the company’s tests were unreliable.
A Walgreens spokesman declined to comment beyond confirming the lawsuit had been filed.
Theranos raised millions of dollars by pitching its technology as a cheaper, faster way to run blood tests. But the companies’ partnership unraveled after questions were raised about the reliability of Theranos’ tests.
The lawsuit, filed under seal in Delaware, claims Theranos misled Walgreens about its blood-testing technology, The Wall Street Journal reported. The $140 million represents Walgreens’ investment in Theranos.
Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes issued a tersely worded statement, saying the company was “disappointed” by the lawsuit.
“Walgreens consistently failed to meet its commitments to Theranos. Through its mishandling of our partnership and now this lawsuit, Walgreens has caused Theranos and its investors significant harm. We will respond vigorously to Walgreens’ unfounded allegations, and will seek to hold Walgreens responsible for the damage it has caused to Theranos and its investors.”
Contributing: The Associated Press