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Lighting : Whos Who of Lighting 2008
BG4 Buyer's Guide April 2008 By Paula Wallace 2007 saw the trend continue of Australia importing more and manufacturing less. There was also increasing competition from manufacturers in Asia and Europe, who have comparatively lower development costs. "Australia is well behind the rest of the world," said Sylvania's Steve Furzey, "we can't compete with a population of 20 million, the base is too small and we are not good at exporting to the rest of the World." According to Michael Farmer, Pierlite's national marketing manager, those companies who are manufacturing to world best practice standards are faring well against overseas manufacturers. "Leverage the best of local manufacturing facilities using world class components = best of both worlds," he said. He noted that during the past year the commercial and industrial business sectors had been strong, with the residential sector softening. Farmer described the demand for energy efficient equipment as "exponential" with high awareness amongst consumers, a trend echoed by all the manufacturers and suppliers who spoke to Lighting Magazine. Walter Wendel, managing director of OSRAM said, "These products are the number one business driver and the demand will strongly increase. Related factors include energy price increases, Kyoto protocol, carbon trading schemes, corporate governance and consumer awareness." Steve Furzey said, "The increased demand for electronic gear mirrors the trend in Europe, though we still trail well behind as a percentage." He noted increased interest in Ceramic Arc HID lighting moving away from Halogen MR 16 products mainly created by the Building Code of Australia. Some companies reported an unexpected surge in demand for Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) after the announcement of the former Federal Government on the phase out of incandescent lamps, which it is reported the new Government will continue. Sarah Campbell from Philips Electronics Australia said, "...there has been a significant increase in the demand for CFLi (integrated compact fluorescent lamps). Other pending legislation has also seen demand increase of other energy efficient lighting technologies such as T5 and CDM lamp and electronic gear systems - lamps typically used in offices, schools and other industry." She said, "There is still a tendency in the market to install lamps and/or systems that have a lower initial cost, but still meet relevant standards. However, consumers and installers will continue to become aware of the long-term financial advantage of energy efficient lamps." Philips will be conducting more educational campaigns throughout 2008 on how the higher upfront cost of quality energy efficient lamps is offset by their enhanced energy usage over the product's life. Philips believes the areas of street lighting and office lighting will provide the biggest opportunities for growth in the coming year. The company recently launched the CosmoPolis range, a new energy efficient street lighting system. There are more energy efficient products to come in 2008 according to Philips, including next generation LED products and halogen lamps. OSRAM also introduced a number of REFLECTIONS ON THE LIGHTING INDUSTRY IN 2007 APRIL 2008 BUYER'S GUIDE Lighting Magazine asked a number of major manufacturers and suppliers of lighting products to provide their views on the industry's performance over the last 12 months and their predictions for the year to come.
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