Long before Theranos became the poster child for Silicon Valley hubris, it was just a promising young startup in search of investors. Axios has obtained a confidential pitch deck from June 2006, when the blood-testing company was seeking $30 million for what it referred to as a "pre-IPO transaction."

Some highlights:

  • Theranos says its accuracy is comparable to "gold standards"
  • The business model seems to have been aimed at clinical and preclinical trials for pharma companies, rather than at broader consumer market.
  • Early investors included Victor Palmieri, a financier who helped sell Donald Trump what would become the Grand Hyatt in New York City.

Theranos would raise the money, and just two years later would be valued by investors at $9 billion. Since then, however, it's been almost all downhill. The first crack appeared in October 2015, when the Wall Street Journal reported that Theranos was not actually using its own technology to conduct most of its own blood tests. Subsequent stories would question the accuracy of Theranos blood tests, conditions of its labs and what it told business partners like Walgreens (which is currently suing the company for breach of contract). Federal regulators also would step in, ultimately banning Theranos founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes from owning or operating a blood-testing lab.

But Theranos does still have at least one big defender in Tim Draper, who was one of the company's earliest investors. Here's his interview with Axios.

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Debris on the streets as then-Hurricane Zeta passes over in Arabi, Louisiana, on Oct. 28. It's the third hurricane to hit Louisiana in about two months, after Laura and Delta. Photo: Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images

Tropical Storm Zeta has killed at least two people, triggered flooding, downed powerlines and caused widespread outages since making landfall in Louisiana as a Category 2 hurricane on Wednesday.

The big picture: A record 11 named storms have made landfall in the U.S. this year. Zeta is the fifth named storm to do so in Louisiana in 2020, the most ever recorded. It weakened t0 a tropical storm early Thursday, as it continued to lash parts of Alabama and the Florida Panhandle with heavy rains and strong winds.

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Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases

Catholics go through containment protocols including body-temperature measurement and hands-sanitisation before entering the Saint Christopher Parish Church, Taipei City, Taiwan, in July. Photo: Ceng Shou Yi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Taiwan on Thursday marked no locally transmitted coronavirus cases for 200 days, as the island of 23 million people's total number of infections reported stands at 550 and the COVID-19 death toll at seven.

Why it matters: Nowhere else has reached such a milestone. While COVID-19 cases surge across the U.S. and Europe, Taiwan's last locally transmitted case was on April 12. Experts credit tightly regulated travel, early border closure, "rigorous contact tracing, technology-enforced quarantine and universal mask wearing" and the island state's previous experience with the SARS virus for the achievement, per Bloomberg.

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