In an interview with BizLED Bureau, Access Fixtures CEO, Steven Rothschild, shares his belief that as the world markets recognize the benefits of LED lighting and the cost falls further, LED will dominate the market.
Access Fixtures is a leading manufacturer and distributor of commercial and sports lighting. How are you globally placed in these domains?
Access Fixtures is based in the USA and consequently does most of its sales in North America. That being said we have supplied commercial, industrial and sports lighting in the Middle East, South America and Africa.
As technology improves, the cost of LED fixtures continues to decrease. How does Access Fixtures cope with the decreasing prices of LED fixtures?
The price decrease of LED luminaires spells opportunity, not problems. As LED lighting prices decrease, LED luminaire prices become more competitive with HID luminaires. If you add lower energy use and reduced maintenance, the lower-priced LED story becomes more compelling. The trick is not to be caught with significant inventory at a high cost. Effective and just in time inventory management can help that.
Access Fixtures constantly tracks LED luminaire pricing and makes sure it is providing its clients with superior lumens per dollar value as well as products that are long lasting.
What is the last LED product you have launched? Tell us about its technology and applications.
One of the latest products we have launched is LED volleyball sports court lighting package. Our tennis court lighting, and basketball court lighting have done very well, so this was a natural follow up. Using an LED light source that emits 140 lumens per watt and that is rated LM70 at 100,000 hours, these sports lighting packages are capturing market share.
What is the potential of the global commercial and sports LED lighting market?
While sports lighting is not used for long periods of time as compared to streetlights, sports lighting uses significant amounts of electricity. LED reduces power use by 60-70% as compared to typical HID light sources. Benefits come from reducing the supply of power required, high CRI, instant on and off capabilities and lower maintenance. A surprising beneficial effect of outdoor court LED lighting is how directional LED is and the fast fall off of LED emitted light. In outdoor applications, this can reduce light trespass. As the world markets recognize the benefits of LED lighting and the cost falls, LED will dominate the market.
Does Access Fixtures do business in India? If yes, how do you see the potential for commercial LED lighting in India?
Access Fixtures does not do business in India at this point of time. It will take time for us to get there.
What strategy do you follow to have an edge over the increasing competition in the global LED market?
The strategy is simple, keep our focus on what matters and where we can add value. There are lots of competitors. We all have to do our own thing and work hard to survive.
Are the Chinese products a threat to Access Fixtures products?
The implication that all Chinese products are cheap is wrong. The Chinese have a range of products like the rest of the world. Also, many components are made in China and then incorporated into products all over the world. The Chinese will continue to compete in all levels and sectors of the market and will do so effectively. With the right sourcing of components and the right market strategy, LED companies will be able to cooperate as well as compete with Chinese LED lighting companies.
How is China placed in the sports LED lighting market?
To date, China has excelled in making the housings for HID lighting. Till date, we have not seen them build and supply complete LED luminaires that are competitive in the sports LED market.
How sports LED lightings are different from general or commercial lighting?
The biggest difference between LED sports lighting and LED commercial lighting is that LED sports lighting requires high lumen output and the ability to control optics. The light needs to be projected to where it is required. Commercial lighting does not typically require similar high lumen output.
How does a buyer choose LED lighting solutions for sports applications? What special features should he look for?
Buyers of LED sports lighting should be looking at the performance the LED sports lighting provides. The overall photometric performance must meet their standards. Longevity of the LED luminaires is important. Color rendering matters, but most LEDs have higher CRI than the HID systems.