How Did Goodiclink Walk Away from a $200 Million IC Business Overnight?

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Ever heard of Goodiclink? If you’re in the world of semiconductors, you might recognize them as a top-level distributor in China, partnering with giants like Xilinx, Altera, TI, and ADI. Just a few days ago, this industry leader announced a significant transformation. What’s behind this sudden shift, and why should you care? It’s not just about one company’s decision; it’s a real-time insight into the challenges and strategies shaping the semiconductor market right now.

Goodiclink: A Snapshot of a Key Player in China’s Chip Distribution Market

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The Beginning

Goodiclink, Founded by Tom Cheung in March 2019, Goodiclink wasn’t just a dream—it was a vision backed by a substantial $13 million angel investment. While impressive, it was Cheung’s background and connections with top original manufacturers and authorized distributors that truly laid the groundwork for the company’s future.

Growth and Partnerships

In just a smidgen over two years, Goodiclink didn’t just hit milestones; they smashed them. Sales reaching $100 million in the first half of 2021 is no small feat, and becoming an official supplier for companies like Kyocera Group and BYD is a testament to their strategic approach. Their partnerships with chip brands like ALTERA, XILINX, ADI, and TI, along with a global presence, have been key to their growth.

A Look at Their Position in China

But don’t get it twisted; Goodiclink’s winning streak isn’t just about the numbers or the partnerships. Their state-of-the-art warehouse and testing facilities, along with a diverse clientele, reveal a grander game plan. But what really stands out is their place in China’s chip distribution market. Sure, they’re a big deal in the chip game, but let’s keep it real; it hasn’t all been smooth sailing.

The Transformation: Goodiclink’s Strategic Shift from Chip Distribution


The Announcement and the Reality
On August 23rd, Tom Cheung dropped a bombshell. He announced a significant transformation within the company, sparking rumors of dissolution. However, Cheung was quick to clarify: they’re not dissolving; they’re pivoting. And you won’t believe how much they were losing—$15,000 a day. It’s a stark reminder of how saturated and competitive the chip distribution market in China has become.

The Financial Strain and Market Conditions
Goodiclink was losing $15,000 a day. Despite being a top-tier distributor in China’s chip industry, the company faced continuous losses. Cheung openly shared this figure on TikTok, highlighting the severity of the situation. He expressed that the chip distribution market in China had become saturated and competitive to the point where short-term recovery seemed unlikely. The once-thriving market had become a battleground with diminishing returns.

The Decision to Leave and Options for Employees
Leaving the chip industry was not a decision taken lightly. It was a calculated move based on a deep analysis of the market, the financial strain, and the bleak prospects. Cheung’s view on the chip industry was clear: staying would mean fighting a losing battle without immediate hope. He offered three distinct options for Goodiclink’s employees. They could continue chip distribution under the Goodiclink name but on their own, bearing all profits and losses without company support or salary, leave with proper compensation, or join him in venturing into the new media industry.

A Reflective Conclusion: A Tale of Resilience and Change

The decision to leave the chip industry is a poignant one, filled with mixed emotions. It reflects the rapid rise and sudden fall of a once-thriving company in a fiercely competitive market. Goodiclink’s story resonates with many in the industry, including us at Rowsum. While we continue to persevere despite challenging market conditions, Goodiclink’s transformation serves as a stark reminder of the volatility of the business landscape.

Tom Cheung’s office aquarium spells out ‘IC’

Market Analysis and Our Perspective

The Current State of the Electronics Industry: Data Insights

According to a report by Electronics Weekly:

  • PC Shipments Decline: In Q1 2023, PC shipments dropped 29% from a year earlier, following a 28% decline in Q4 2022.

These figures are a stark reminder of the challenges faced by the entire electronics industry.

Rowsum’s Analysis: A Personal Take on the Downturn

After grinding it out for 7 years in this industry, I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. But let me tell you, this current slump? It’s a whole different beast. Here’s my two cents:

  • The COVID-19 Effect and Economic Challenges: The pandemic has been a game-changer, disrupting everything from supply chains to consumer behavior. Combined with global economic uncertainty, it’s created a perfect storm for the industry.
  • Last Year’s Automotive Chip Explosion: The sudden surge in demand for automotive chips last year was like a rollercoaster ride. It brought excitement but also instability, contributing to the current decline.

The current downturn in the electronics industry has compelled numerous companies to pivot or dissolve. Dissolution or transformation has become a common response, as the outlook for the short term, or even the next one to two years, appears bleak. In the eyes of many, the industry’s prospects for growth are stalled, prompting a wave of strategic shifts.

Navigating the Storm: Strategies for an Uncertain Electronics Market

Chinese fortune cookies. Cookies with white blank and 2023 text inside for prediction words

Future Predictions: Navigating the Path Forward in the Electronics Industry

Industry Predictions: A Two-Year Standstill?

Transitioning to a Cautionary Note from Goodiclink’s Founder

Tom Cheung, the founder of Goodiclink, recently took to TikTok to share his candid thoughts on the industry’s future. His advice was clear: steer clear of the electronics industry, at least for now. Cheung predicts that the industry will see no growth in the next two years, a forecast that led him to make a drastic decision to shift focus.

Taking a Moment to Reflect: What’s the Next Step?

Exiting the chip industry comes with a whirlwind of feelings. It’s a story that hits home for many, us at Rowsum included. So what’s our next move? It’s a question we’re all grappling with in this unpredictable market.

Yet, Cheung’s route isn’t for everyone. Many of us, myself included, are deeply committed to the electronics field. Fueled by either passion, need, or faith in the sector’s promise, a multitude of people and firms are opting to stay the course.

Understanding Both Sides: Steering Through Future Uncertainties

Examining What Both Consumers and Brands Are Thinking

What Matters Most to Consumers in Today’s Shaky Economy

In today’s unstable economy, consumers are evolving to become more thoughtful and selective:

  • Utility Over Frills: In today’s market, consumers are leaning towards products that are not just entertaining but also practical and versatile.
  • Quality Meets Affordability: While high quality remains non-negotiable, consumers are now gravitating towards brands that offer good value without the premium price tag.

The Roadmap for Brands and Sellers: Adapting to Change

Given the evolving consumer landscape, here’s what brands and sellers should zero in on:

  • Cost Efficiency: Trim down inventory and fine-tune operations to get the most bang for your buck.
  • Partnership Building: In today’s cash-centric world, growth isn’t the sole aim. Brands should forge alliances and scout for fresh opportunities.
  • Consumer-Centric Design: Ditch gut feelings and turn to market studies and customer feedback. Tailor your products to meet real consumer demands.

Rowsum’s Response: Thriving Amid Challenges

Balancing the Budget and Forging Alliances

Cutting Costs, Not Corners: Maintaining Quality

At Rowsum, we get that being cost-effective is crucial, especially now. But we’re not skimping on quality. We’re making calculated cost cuts while upholding our quality standards.

Strengthening Ties with Our Suppliers

We’re not only enhancing our supplier channels but actively seeking collaboration to explore future possibilities. Recently, we’ve gained support from frontline agents, including leading chip brands like Xilinx, where we now have a competitive edge. This success highlights the power of collaboration. Join us as we continue to strengthen our supply chain and solidify our market position.

Working Hand-in-Hand with Customers: Offering Savings and Support

Introductory Offers: Savings on New Items and Prototypes

To alleviate the financial stress on our customers, we’re offering discounts on new products and prototypes. We aim to be quicker and more cost-effective than ever, supporting innovation without straining your budget.

The Perks of Bulk Orders: Quality Meets Affordability

When it comes to large-scale orders, we’re not just focusing on cost-cutting. We’ve ramped up our quality control team at each production stage, minimizing the chance of defects. This approach may not hike up our expenses much, but it delivers exceptional value to our clients by sidestepping potential issues.

Wrapping Up: The Crossroads and The Choices

Goodiclink’s pivot isn’t just a headline; it’s a wake-up call. The semiconductor world is changing, and fast. We at Rowsum get it—adapt or get left behind. Our game plan? Keep delivering top-notch products, stay nimble, and never lose sight of what our customers truly value.

In this industry, the only constant is change. So, here’s our two cents: Don’t just brace for impact—embrace the change. After all, the future isn’t something that happens to us; it’s something we create.


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Charles Zhang

Hi there, I'm Charles Zhang, with 6 years in PCB & PCBA manufacturing. Looking forward to sharing insights and tips from the industry. Join me as we explore this tech world together!

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