This month is not starting very well for technology enthusiasts. Most of us have fond memories of Zalman, a company that has been producing advanced cooling solutions since 1999. Some are old enough to remember the fan-like CNPS6000 Socket 370 coolers and the first Reserator liquid cooling kits. Zalman was one of the pioneers of low-noise cooling solutions, in an era when stock coolers were noisy enough to drive people insane. Unfortunately for us all, on November 3, 2014 the company filed a bankruptcy protection request in the Seoul Central District Court.
Even as the PC market hit the skids in recent years, the hobbyist/home builder market hung in there. People like me, for whom Fry’s Electronics or Micro Center is like a supermarket, kept building and upgrading their systems while HP, Dell and Acer were looking at sales reports and weeping. We hobbyists may be small in number but we’re keeping a lot of companies alive. CPU Magazine, which caters to home builders, is still publishing monthly when pretty much everyone else has given up on print, and Newegg.com continues to grow. One prominent name for home builders is about to disappear, though, through no fault of the market or even its own. Zalman Tech, a Korean company known for bringing a lot of innovation in silent PC cooling, might be finished. The firm filed for bankruptcy earlier this week. The problem lies with Moneual, Zalman’s parent company. According to reports in the Korean press, Moneual was allegedly involved in a very well designed and planned multi-billion dollar corporate fraud. It started when Moneual failed to repay their massive export bonds that matured on October 20, 2014 and eventually filed for bankruptcy.