Last month at the American Lighting Association Conference in Palm Beach, Zia Eftekhar, CEO of Philips Professional Luminaires, and Rick Leaman, CEO of OSRAM SYLVANIA, discussed the future of LEDs in a special forum.
“We believe LED is the technology that is going to move the industry forward,” Eftekhar told the audience. “It has permeated into the residential market, but we have to be on top of it because the residential sector is different from commercial. In residential, it is more of a component change, while commercial is more about systems change. Technology has to be embraced. The ability to communicate this technology [is key.] LEDs should not be sold as a commodity; you must sell the value that goes with it,” he stated.
Leaman affirmed that the residential market is ripe for LED. “We’re going to see increased demand,” he observed. “LEDs are right for the market today based on energy savings. It’s already used in table lamps and undercabinet lighting.” Eftekhar added that how well the residential market accepts LED will also depend on how the lighting industry sells the product. “It’s hard to compete with the low cost of incandescents; we have to sell the long-term benefits of LEDs and talk about the total cost versus the initial cost.”