The bad news keeps on coming for business associates of Martin Shrekli, the “bad boy” of pharmaceuticals who made a name for himself earlier this year when he hiked up the price of an AIDS drug from $13.50 to $750. Less than two weeks after it fired Shkreli as CEO, South San Francisco-based cancer drug research company KaloBios Pharmaceuticals Inc. filed for bankruptcy.
KaloBios had taken strategic investment from Shkreli to avoid closing down. But its plans were thwarted when federal prosecutors charged Shkreli with securities fraud and wire fraud related to a company where he had previously served as CEO.
According to its website, KaloBios was developing a therapy for seriously ill patients with cancer. Shkreli’s reign as CEO was short-lived; he took the helm in November of 2015. With the appointment, KaloBios announced that Shkreli and other investors would provide an investment of at least $3 million.
This isn’t the first time Shkreli has been let go from one of his companies. Retrophin, a San Diego-based biotech founded by Shkreli, unceremoniously dumped him in 2014 for allegedly committing stock trading irregularities.
Prior to the infamous price hike, Shkreli was known on Wall Street as one of the best in the business at short-selling stock. In his twenties, Shkreli set up his own hedge fund and posted hit pieces on gossip websites to destroy the reputations of biotech companies whose shares he was shorting.CF