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Nexxus Lighting on educating consumers and more

12 October 2011

Mike Bauer, President and CEO, Nexxus Lighting, Inc., will be sharing more of his thoughts on-site at LEDs 2011 during the "Fixture Manufacturers Panel Discussion: Addressing Challenges and Reliability at the Fixture Level." Register today to make sure you're there!

On the shelves of Big Box stores "Lighting Facts" on labels are evident on retrofit lamps, how do you foresee the consumer understanding these labels? Are color temperature and efficiency tradeoffs understood or relevant to the consumer? How is your company addressing these challenges?
With Array® as a new brand on the "big box" retail shelves of Lowe's, we at Nexxus Lighting are living this daily and see consumer education as a major focus area. Moving away from a "wattage" mentality to delivering a simple message that "the lower the wattage... the better ...for the same amount and quality of light!" is critical, and Lighting Facts labels play a big part. But more needs to be done. Most consumers do not know the term "lumens" and educating them that "lumens" in layman's terms equals " the amount of light" - is very important, and the more lumens you can get per watt of power is also a key metric on the performance of a product that needs to be better explained. Color (CCT) and Color Quality (CRI) along with dimming compatibility definitely need to be made easier to understand and we are focused on that effort in packaging improvements and in-store displays to develop that awareness and understanding. So Lighting Fact's labels are a good first start to create a common standard product performance label - but educating the consumer about the terms used on that label still needs to be developed.

How is your company finding ways to "build a better mousetrap" in the era of patents and IP for lighting?
At Nexxus, and as small public company, IP is critical to our survival and differentiation from the bigger players in the market. You have to be able to create and expand on new and unique ways to improve the performance of products, whether it is thermal management, drive circuitry, optics ... everything needs to be thought about in fresh ways. Then you need to have the infrastructure in place to protect that IP through patents and trade secrets, as well as defend those patents and IP you have already developed. It is new ball game for many lighting companies, where old technology has been around for years and concerns about IP never came up back in the 80's and 90's.

The industry is trying many techniques to accelerate end user adoption of LEDs, from new topologies (like remote phosphor) to common LED package sizes. From your point of view, what is the most effective way to increase adoption?
Simple - Meeting customer expectations for performance at price that makes sense in their mind to justify the premium to be paid. It is a "highest quality product at a low price" game from our perspective.

What are you looking forward to at LEDs 2011?
I have always looked at this conference as the place where you learn about the latest and greatest in LED technology from a components perspective. It is chance to see the future - with new cutting edge developments and then thinking about how you can apply them in new products. Always fun, and you can't beat the weather!