“Bad Boy Du Jour” Shkreli? Just Fred Hassan’s World-View — Taken To Its Logical Conclusion. . .

You simply must read Matt Herper in Forbes this morning. He is 100 per cent right: sociopath. “Iconoclast”? I think not.

He has written the definitive take-down of the Turing CEO’s latest 5,000 per cent price gouging. Go read it — more in a minute — but Matt’s got this to say about that CEO’s mentor/teacher, Fred Hassan:

. . . .”The only person I needed affirmation from was Fred Hassan,” Shkreli told me during our first meeting. “So I asked [Hassan and Saunders] do you think I can do this? They said you must do this. We really want you to do this.”

Saunders, who is now the chief executive of Allergan, says that the team chipped in to help Shkreli buy the technology [at his former company, Retrophin], but lost interest as Shkreli changed focused more on drug pricing. Saunders and another former Schering executive, Robert Bertolini, say Shkreli listed Saunders as a member of Retrophin’s board of directors on the company’s web site without, in Saunders’ words, “my consent, knowledge, or permission.” Bertolini says Saunders was furious at the time, but Shkreli claims that Saunders agreed to be on the board but never finished any paperwork. . . .

That behavior matches Shkreli’s Internet persona. He’ll Tweet vulgar quotes from Wu-Tang Clan and Eminem songs, and he helped ignite the current controversy by calling John Carroll, the editor of industry news site FiercePharma, a “moron.” Shkreli claims he doesn’t care what the media or the public thinks, but he has an almost pathological need to respond to what is said about him, and lacks the good sense, so ingrained in most chief executives, to know when not to talk. . . . Whether Shkreli can keep doing his job with a giant target painted on him is an open question. . . .

And, to be clear, John Carroll is — in my experienced opinion — a smart, thoughtful and independent man. Too bad Shkreli cannot see that.

I’ve said it so many times before — Saunders is (in my experienced opinion) just a milder version of Shkreli — both taught their particular version of deal-craft skull-duggery, by Ex Schering-Plough CEO “Fast” Fred Hassan. His world-view leads to these abberant next-gen pharma CEOs. But at least the Turing CEO has now been definitively unmasked, thanks in no small part to Matt. [And to that CEO’s own over the top idiocy.] How long until Brent is? That’s a quesiton for the ages. . . [Fred pretty much has been — and is. . . a has been.] Onward, in any event, on a lovely fall noon-time. . . .


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