Case Labs of Canoga Park, CA closes doors (tariffs)

Discussion in 'Computers, Hardware, and Operating Systems' started by W9GB, Oct 11, 2018.

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  1. W9GB

    W9GB Ham Member QRZ Page

  2. NN5AA

    NN5AA Ham Member QRZ Page

    It is going to be interesting to see how many companies use 'TARIFFS' as a scapegoat for their financial insolvency.

    The main Case Labs page says "Down for Maintenance", but references several other sites where their cases are still available.

    Here's one :

    Let's see. 415.95 Euros = $ 480.58 USD . That does not include shipping & handling , insurance, etc., so the question has to be asked: Just how large of a market is there for computer cases approaching $ 500 in cost , and one that does not include even a power supply.

    This is similar to the so-called 'boutique' flavors of audio equipment, musical instruments, and effects pedals. Very small volume, and extremely high margins built in to the selling prices.

    If you look on NewEgg, or Ebay, you can find comparable cases for 1/2 or even 1/4 the price. You can build a much better mousetrap, but if you want to make an income from it, you have to be able to sell it at a price where it makes inroads into the market, and in enough volume to cover overhead, materials, cost of staffing, insurance, IT equipment, warehousing, etc. .

    This statement was interesting:

    CaseLabs wrote that " [w]e have been forced into bankruptcy and liquidation," and suggested that "[t]he tariffs have played a major role raising prices by almost 80% (partly due to associated shortages), which cut deeply into our margins." That bracketed statement I think , says it all. I wonder how much of what they were selling, materials, manufacturing, etc., was outsourced to some other country, even though they touted their cases as " the original, made in USA, industrial CaseLabs cases!"

    So tariffs caused prices to rise, due to associated shortages. Did other companies buy extra surplus quantities of 'whatever' ahead of the tariffs effective date, drastically reducing available product, or did their suppliers fall by the wayside, causing any remaining ones to raise their prices to Case Labs, for the same products & services ?

    Start-ups have a high failure rate anyway, many times due to under-capitalization. It's like the old Wall Street joke about investing"

    "How do you make a million in the stock market?"

    "You start with 2 million !"

    The previous statements are not intended , in any way, to be construed as investment advice. YMMV !!

    73 de NN5AA , Vince
    KP4SX and KK4NSF like this.
  3. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    While I find it sad that a company has had to file bankruptcy, I too find the "tariff" excuse to be a bit thin. The truth is that the market for custom desktop computers is way, way down..... folks just aren't building as many high-end computers as they used to.
  4. KA1MDA

    KA1MDA Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've always wondered how much RFI such "designer" cases with the big windows in them generate. I doubt most of them could pass FCC requirements for even a class A computing device, let alone the more stringent class B requirements for home computers.
  5. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    CaseLabs has been around for quite a while, and there is a market for their products. The same people who will pay $2K for a 'gaming computer'... Trade wars generally don't have any winners.

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