Korea's LG Electronics, one of the biggest names in mobile phones, digital signage and appliances, is eying another potentially huge business: the market for green lighting technology. Specifically the opportunity for light emitting diode (LED) technology.
LG has already amassed a number of official energy efficiency, quality and safety certifications for its LED lighting and plasma lighting systems in Europe, China, Japan and Korea. The company is using some of the optic technology that is at the core of its heating, ventilation and air-condition (HVAC) products as the foundation for its lighting products. It expects to reach an LED production capacity of 5 million units by 2012. Overall, LG projects the global solid state LED lighting market at $5.1 billion globally by 2015; the growth rate is approximately 30 percent annually.
Mind you, as you can see by the image, this isn't the sort of LED you would put in your home. The LG 53-watt LED flat lighting (pictured) would be the replacement for a fluorescent panel in commercial or retail settings, with the caveat that it is supposed to use only 30 percent of the electricity needed to power the legacy lighting. LG is also touting a big outdoor flood lighting replacement, the MR16. Plus, it has some plasma lighting systems in the works.
And, it is counting on its brand name to help win share in this market. Here's a statement from Yonghwan Kim, vice president of the LG Lighting & Solution Business Team:
"Green energy, carbon and environmental protection concepts have been widely accepted throughout the world and there is enormous opportunity for companies with core technologies and brand recognition. With long-honed expertise in energy efficient technologies, the potential for LG to make a significant environmental contribution is enormous."
Considering the production might of LG, he just might have a point. The commercial LED market is about to get a whole lot more competitive -- globally, if not here in the United States.