A big issue facing distributors and LED Lighting manufacturers is the emergence of small, China-based LED manufacturers in the market. Many are getting booths at trade shows, and many send multiple e-mails looking for buyers of their products. tED magazine has received dozens of these e-mails in the past 6 months, even though we are not in the lighting sales business.
“I wake up 20 e-mails deep every morning,” Derek Wall, CEO of Chicago-based lighting company Louvers International told tED magazine on the “DistributED with tED magazine” podcast. “I don’t know how they got my email, but I am on some list, probably that they bought. And they are promoting a product and a price. Unfortunately, some people are receptive to that.”
During the podcast, Devin Wall, President of Louvres International, talked about the battle many NAED members are facing when it comes to price alone. “‘Cheap’ is the best way to put it. That’s the only way they know to sell is price. It’s like diamonds. I can buy a 2-carat diamond for $10 bucks. Is it real? No. But the Amazon mentality of get it here tomorrow and the low price come into play.”
Louvers International said during the podcast that they bought some of the fixtures so they could take them apart to see how they were made. Derek wall says when you take the lights apart, you will find the lowest quality components possible. The Walls say they talk with a lot of distributors who will fight with contractors about not buying the low-priced LED lighting, because when the fails, the China-based manufacturer is out of business.
“We’ve talked to hundreds of lighting nerds, and the public sees a flashy e-mail and a price, and they start to buy,” Derek Wall said on the podcast. Also during the podcast, we talk about changing the contractor’s mindset to get away from price along, and look at quality, the horror stories they are hearing about cheap LED lighting, and how they see the lighting market with cheap LED lighting in the future.
The “DistributED with tED magazine” podcast “Cheap Lighting Made By Chinese Companies with Devin and Derek Wall” is available on Tuesday, February 4 on all podcast players, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Play.