Big lighting business

Singapore 26th April 2011

Back at work after my extended Easter break 🙂 It was a good trip to Europe, met many people in Milan and learned a lot from meeting the principals and visiting their lighting factories and showrooms in Germany. It is so important to know the people behind the products! I keep saying it.

On my flight back I read an interesting article about the giants of our lighting industry in relation to the planned take-over of Siteco by Osram. Can we actually call it a take over? Legally probably yes but practically they were already family as it were. Part of big brother Siemens. The article was analysing the planned move from Osram to the stock exchange. And with that Osram is going to be the big competitor of Philips. Philips is already listed on the stock exchange for years and had a turnover in 2010 in its lighting division of close to Euro 8 Billion. Osram (Siemens) turnover in 2010 was close to Euro 5 Billion. The next big business lighting company would be General Electric lighting division with turnovers in the Euro 2-3 Billion range. That by the way pales by GE’s overall business turnover of more than Euro 150 Billion!!! We then get to the Zumtobel group with sales figures close to Euro 1 Billion. The Zumtobel group includes the former Staff, Thorn, etc. These are big business figures, compared to your well-known leading brand “smaller” company names like the Iguzzini’s, Bega’s, etc. with turnovers estimated well below Euro 500 Million. It is estimated that the worldwide lighting market sales are worth about Euro 45 Billion a year. It looks like the big four a snooping up about one third of it.

One can wonder why the Siemens group is proceeding its lighting business under the Osram name rather than say Siemens Lighting, like both Philips and GE are doing? The article notes further that Osram has factories in more than 48 countries but that interestingly one quarter of Osram’s personel is located in China. It just underlines how much impact the Chinese economy has on the big company strategies together with the enormous growth and contribution that LED lighting has on the company turnovers.

In Light Watch today a picture of the BEGA factory in Menden, near Dortmund in Germany. BEGA as I understand, is one of the few companies that still more or less manufacture everything in-house on its original factory site. No such thing as China manufacturing…   

Light Watch 78: BEGA site in Germany in the middle of the countryside!

26. April 2011 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: light watch, lighting and the economy | Leave a comment

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