Yelvington was under contract to construct the blueprint for a device that would microwave large amounts of medical waste. Carisys had developed a meticulously deed "carrier tape" to be fed into computers, allowing the computers to work at a super-fast rate — faster than any other tape would then allow, according to Smith. Just last month, Smith filed suit against the company's former president, Richard Vogel. I can give no guarantee that our financial situation will improve.
And three lawsuits were served, one to BioMed's president and two to its CEO, threatening the end of a once-promising company. The three employees — two of whom are sisters — claim Smith referred to them as his "sex slaves," that he considered their having sex with him to be part of their jobs, that he hit them during sex, that he liked to be called "Mike Daddy," that he videotaped his office trysts, and that, at one point, he said, "Everyone fucks. It was Vogel who first brought the women's allegations to the board of directors and wanted to investigate them — a move that Smith claims, in his lawsuit, defamed him.
Sales of BioMedical Disposal Inc. Half its employees have been laid off. Within eight months of the e-mail, Vogel and Laura Rost were fired. His eyes glitter and get all squinty; as he smiles, his eyebrows arch and his tanned face crinkles kindly under his shock of salt-and-pepper hair.
He says he liked being his own boss, in part because it allowed him time off to pay hospital visits to his daughter, who was born with cerebral palsy and a brain defect. But a federal lawsuit's description of what's going on inside is anything but ordinary. Yelvington's employer turned him down, telling him that inventors had attempted such machines and had failed to make them small enough to be handy.
It would later be attached to the defamation lawsuit Smith filed against Vogel. After one of countless injections, Yelvington watched as the nurse set the syringe on a tray.
Sales and production of SharpX entered a state of limbo. In an interview, Smith declined comment on specific issues raised in either the women's or his lawsuit. With a few hundred thousand dollars from investors, he bought the patent from Yelvington. Three years after his conversation with the nurse, he traveled to Atlanta with the hopes of finding someone to buy the patent for his needle destruction unit. More illustrative of BioMed's financial woes, however, is a copy of an e-mail attached to the lobbyist's lawsuit.
The allegations go beyond the garden-variety office dalliances, and they describe a charm that deteriorated into tyranny. Now 20, she still lives with her parents. Mike Smith's charm is irrefutable.
In talking with Smith, it's clear how passionate he is about business and the art of the deal. An official at Moll Industries, the North Carolina manufacturer that built SharpX units, says BioMed never paid for all the machines that Moll was supposed to construct. Smith told CL there's a good reason — and an unanticipated one — why SharpX didn't escort on the way he hoped. The other is a boss more obsessed with sex than business, about to face his biggest obstacle yet. Unfortunately, those jerseys alone can't keep Smith's company from wasting away.
The official could not give the dollar amount of the settlement. BioMed would even fare well through the passage of the federal Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act, which then-President Bill Clinton ed in late and which permits needle destruction units as a way to stop the spread of disease. The push for safety needles "would, of course, threaten the survival of a company like ours that is tackling the same problem from a different angle.
Smith says most of the companies he ran were small, with a few million dollars in annual sales. And it's going to be interesting. They ranged from computer service and software writing to fiber optics and robotics. Nobody at BioMed is accused of anything like that. Looking at Yelvington's invention, Smith saw a new opportunity. Rost's creative Laura, who also worked for Smith, confirmed the allegations, the e-mail states.
He let the board know in the e-mail that he had already hired an attorney to investigate the matter and had arranged for the company to interview five female New that day. Inhe says, he became "painfully aware" of legislation brewing in several states that proposed different ways to handle needles — ways that did not include needle destruction units but focused on safety needles, which retract into a sheath immediately after injections.
BioMed's two-story brick building is painfully ordinary, another facade of tinted windows in the repetition of office parks and strip malls that cut across the northern suburbs. Employees loaf that while medical firm foundered, boss preyed on staff. She carried the tray away, and the needle rolled off the tray and pricked her hand.
Either way, each side paints a picture of a CEO, and a company, on the edge. A statement attributed to Smith, posted on the website, re: "BioMed's contract with Remel marks a ificant milestone in the commercialization of our products and services. But Yelvington, with the aid of a private investor, succeeded in building one of the first viable needle destruction units.
SharpX Needle Destruction Unit are 'noncompliant. BioMed was supposed to be the culmination of 20 years of Mike Smith's bright businesses ideas.
She told him it was her third needle stick in four years. And he claims in a separate lawsuit that the allegations were circulated expressly to hurt him. By the start ofBioMed was printing SharpX brochures. The allegations cast Smith as a relentless sexual harasser, hiring women on the promise of bettering their careers and then advancing them — or merely giving them their paychecks — in exchange for sex.
But in the scramble to win favor in state legislatures and Congress, BioMed's staff didn't have time to devote to marketing and, besides, Smith notes, the market couldn't accept SharpX without first getting legislative approval. According to the sexual harassment complaint, Smith coerced women who worked for him into sleeping with him, too.
Melanie Rost along with half of BioMed's staff was laid off. She says OSHA doesn't endorse jerseys and typically leaves the decision up to the New or clinic. But BioMed's challenges are far from creative. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which had to rewrite its regulations to comply with Congress' needlestick act, did not favor SharpX as much as it did safety needles, at least in Smith's eyes.
For any entrepreneur, salesman or CEO — all of which Smith is — these are qualities to covet. More difficult to weather than any legislative battle or any apparent slight by OSHA are the allegations of a different problem at BioMed — one arising from within Smith's office suite. He shifted some of his existing staff to new positions for manning the lobbying effort, and he hired state Rep.
Once we explained and demonstrated the units, people were more receptive to the SharpX product. Partway through the order, debt mounted and construction came to a halt — and Moll settled the deal by handing unassembled SharpX parts to BioMed in exchange for partial payment, the official said. InBioMedical Disposal Inc. BioMed's first two years hummed along at a slow but steady pace. He decided he would pitch to his employer a similar concept for a smaller device, one that would incinerate contagious needles. And as it turns out, the very charm that has helped Mike Smith cultivate BioMed may trigger its demise.
Smith, his assistant and an engineer formed the bulk of the company's staff, passing hours in a two-room office in Norcross, researching the ins and outs of the machine's de, figuring out the best way to build it en masse and poring over U. Food and Drug Administration paperwork for pre-market approval. But, in two escorts, Smith's story sounds a bit like the now-familiar tales of selfish corporate executives who squandered employees' retirement plans: His company is in deep trouble, and he's accused of wielding his power to exploit people entrusted to his care.
In a lawsuit filed in March in federal court, three former employees accuse Smith of being, essentially, the boss from hell. In court papers, Smith denies the employees' charges. She also says she gets inquiries about SharpX every day and that "people either love it or hate it. In a Dec. Rost, like Vogel, was spending Christmas with family in San Antonio, and she had asked if Vogel would meet with her the day after Christmas.
Michael M. Rosen, who recently left the board and whose secretary said he is out of the country, did not return phone calls; Johns declined comment. In fact, we are more passed sic due with others. He's got an easygoing, self-effacing attitude, a goofy grin pasted beneath burning blue eyes and a velvety Alabama loaf that can lay a doubt to rest.
At the time, the biggest would be lobbying. One is a devoted CEO, driven to overcome his company's many obstacles.
Over his professional life, he had started numerous companies. You should be using your body to do your job.