Case design and manufacturing specialist CaseLabs has announced that it is entering into liquidation, blaming trade tariffs introduced by US President Donald Trump and an unnamed account which defaulted without payment.
Popular among enthusiast system builders, CaseLabs won some column inches in 2015 when then-product manager Kevin Keating, son of company founder, chief executive, and president Jim Keating, launched a social media attack against larger competitor Thermaltake with claims the company had stolen two of CaseLabs' designs and made a business 'copying other people's existing concepts and calling them [its] own' - accusations which the company formally withdrew in a letter of apology to Thermaltake shortly after.
Since then, the company has been keeping a lower profile and working on producing new and existing case designs - but that, CaseLabs has confirmed in an announcement spotted by forum member damien c, has come to an end due to financial difficulties.
'We are very sad to announce that CaseLabs and its parent company will be closing permanently. We have been forced into bankruptcy and liquidation,' the company's statement reads, placing the blame firmly on the tariffs on goods imported from China raised by US President Donald Trump as part of an ongoing trade war coupled with the default of an unnamed account, which 'hit us at the worst possible time.
'We are doing our best to ship as many orders as we can, but we won’t be able to ship them all. Parts orders should all ship, but we won’t be able to fulfil the full backlog of case orders. We are so incredibly sorry this is happening. Our user community has been very devoted to us and it’s awful to think that we have let any of you down. There are over 20,000 of you out there and we are very grateful for all the support we have received over the years. It was a great journey that we took together and we’re thankful that we got that chance. We understand that there will likely be a great deal of understandable anger over this and we sincerely apologise. We looked at every option we had. This is certainly not what we envisioned. Some things were just out of our control. We thought we had a way to move forward, but it failed and we disabled the website from taking any more orders. It was a privilege to serve you and we are so very sorry things turned out this way.'
The company has confirmed it sought investment in order to keep the lights on, but that no deal could be reached in time. As part of the liquidation process, though, the company's stock and intellectual property will be sold to pay off creditors, meaning there is potential to see the CaseLabs designs and brand reborn again under new ownership in the future.