By Diane Duenez
Just in the past few years, the lighting industry has made significant changes. That holds especially true in LED. Between costs and popularity, the entire industry is racing to educate the consumer and keep up with the demand. To get a better handle on exactly what we can expect in the coming year for lighting, and especially LED, we talked to manufacturers to see what their outlook was on new business in the new year.
Jeff Dross is the Corporate Director, Education and Industry Trends at Kichler Lighting. He believes homes in 2018 will see more integrated LED. He says residential lighting in the home is almost exclusively LED when it comes to new construction. In older homes, he says the switch over is simple, especially when it comes to projects like under-the-cabinet lighting. While LED lighting overall takes off, don’t expect to see growth in decorative LED lighting in 2018. Dross says most people just aren’t in a hurry to switch to LED in rooms they use once or twice a year. They just don’t see a reason to use LED in the chandelier that rarely gets turned on.
Jared Okawa is the Brand Manager with PATLITE (USA). PATLITE is one of the leading providers of LED status indicating lights. When asked about the economics of lights in 2018, Okawa responded, “As the cost to manufacture LEDs drops and the flexibility of the LED technology continues to grow overall, LED usage will continue to grow and expand in more and more market segments.” In 2018, PATLITE expects a 10 percent growth in the current market.
Both companies stressed the importance of their distribution partners. Both agree that the key to success in 2018 is a focus on education. “They are going to have to keep their eyes and ears open. They are going to begin seeing a shift in demand for LED in stores. They are going to have to interact and educate the consumer on what form of LED they really need,” Dross said. “When they come in and ask for a day light, they must be able to steer the consumer in the right direction. They need to know that day light is not necessarily the color temperature that they want for their home. If they get home with the wrong temperature, they will ultimately be unhappy if they weren’t educated properly in the store.”
Okawa agrees. “Our distribution partners are critical to our success. They provide the key link to our ever expanding customer base.”
And look for the expansions to continue. Both companies say they have plans in 2018 to add new products just to keep up with the demand, and PATLITE plans to add personnel. It’s certainly an optimistic outlook when it comes to the lighting industry for 2018.
Tagged with 2018, economy