TP-LINK was founded in 1996 by two brothers, Zhao Jianjun (Cliff Chao) and Zhao Jiaxing (Jeffrey Chao), with a network card they had developed. The company name was based on the concept of “twisted pair link”, a kind of electromagnetic cabling.
TP-LINK sells through multiple sales channels globally, including traditional retailers, online retailers, wholesale distributors, direct market resellers (“DMRs”), value-added resellers (“VARs”) and broadband service providers. Its main competition includes companies such as NETGEAR, Belkin, Linksys, D-Link and Asus.
TP-LINK began its first international expansion in 2005. In 2007, the company moved into its new 100,000 square meters headquarters and facilities at Shenzhen’s Hi-Tech Industry Park. TP-LINK USA was established in 2008.
Since entering the international market in 2005, TP-Link products have been deployed in over 120 countries. In the first quarter of 2013, TP-Link was the largest market share holder in the world for WLAN equipment with a 42.2% global market share.