Controversial pharmaceutical executive revealed as buyer of $2M Wu-Tang Clan album

10 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Pharma boss unmasked as Wu Tang Clan album buyer.

Turing Pharmaceuticals chief executive Martin Shkreli, who became one of the most despised people on the planet this year after he raised the price of a lifesaving drug by 4,000 per cent, has given his critics another reason to hate him.

The Wu-Tang Clan are donating proceeds from the sale of their one-off album “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin” to charity after the buyer was unveiled as a controversial tycoon Martin Shkreli.The “morally bankrupt” boss of a drugs company who hiked the cost of an AIDS drug by more than 5,000% overnight has splashed out more than £1m on a one-off rap record.

The band said they were creating “a piece of art like nobody else has done in the history of music” when they released the record for sale to the highest bidder. Shkreli purchased the album through the auction site Paddle8, which announced last month that it sold Shaolin to a “single collector, with no physical or digital duplicate in existence.” The auction site described the album as “a sonic sculpture presented in a hand-carved nickel-silver box.” It also comes with “a 174-pages of bound gilded parchment containing lyrics, credits, and anecdotes on the production of each song, bound in leather.” Last March, Wu-Tang Clan revealed it was selling the special-edition double album of which there would be only one copy. Daraprim fights toxoplasmosis, an infection that is especially dangerous for AIDS patients with weakened immune systems and also pregnant women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “It’s very easy to see a large drug price increase and say ‘Gosh, those people must be gouging,” he told NBC News. “But when you find out that the company is not really making any money, what does that mean?

It’s very hard stuff to understand.” Under the terms of the deal, Shkreli can’t “commercialize” it for 88 years, according to Paddle8, the online auction house that Wu Tang Clan hired to handle the transaction. Following the outcry, Shkreli’s company pledged that no patient needing the drug would ever be denied access to it – but HIV health campaigners said this was not enough. They even floated the possibility of having the album tour museums like an exhibit, taking extra security precautions to ensure that no illicit recording devices would be used to capture and disseminate the music. While Paddle8 did not divulge how much the album went for, the company did said it was the most ever spent on a single album, far surpassing the $306,000 spent for the only existing album from The Quarrymen, the band that became The Beatles. Initially Wu-Tang attached stipulations to the sale, namely that the buyer would have to wait 88 years before publicly sharing the album for mass consumption.

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