Business News | Apr 18, 2008

Zumtobel Group acquires Italian LED company SpaceCannon

The Zumtobel Group has strengthened its position in preparation for the further expansion of its LED operations through the acquisition of the Italian LED company SpaceCannon. SpaceCannon, which was founded in 1988 near Alessandria in Piedmont, specialises in LED-based lighting scenarios for outdoor, façade and event lighting.

The company made a name for itself in the industry through such major projects as the Petronas Tower in Malaysia or the Sydney and Turin Olympics where it was responsible for creating lighting scenarios. With a current workforce of almost 50, SpaceCannon posts annual sales of approximately EUR 7 million.     
    
• SpaceCannon complements the Group's existing LED expertise to perfection
• Further expansion of the Zumtobel Group's LED technology network
• LED technology a core topic at the Light+Building fair

"SpaceCannon makes the ideal complement for us as we continue to expand our technology base and applications know-how in LEDs – the market of the future. SpaceCannon provides us with access to sales channels and expertise in new market segments, such as event and show lighting. In addition, we can make excellent use of innovative LED solutions to expand the product portfolio of our core business, above all at Thorn. I am firmly convinced that the integration of SpaceCannon into the Zumtobel Group will provide additional dynamic impetus as we grow our LED activities," said Zumtobel Group CEO Andreas Ludwig, explaining the reasoning behind the acquisition.

Integration into the Zumtobel LED Division:

In organisational terms, SpaceCannon whose founder Bruno Baiardi died suddenly in August 2007 will form part of the Zumtobel LED Division, the Group's in-house specialist for LED technology. This aligns well with the technological focus of SpaceCannon's operations, where some 70 percent of applications are based on innovative LED solutions, supplemented by Xenon technology for outdoor lighting effects that are visible from a long distance. The integration of SpaceCannon will also enable the new LED Division to intensify the planned creation of new sales channels for innovative LED products and solutions. At the same time, the Thorn brand in particular will be able to draw on the expertise of SpaceCannon in its core activities in professional outdoor lighting, not least in the development of LED-based outdoor and façade luminaires.

Extending the LED technology network:
With the acquisition of SpaceCannon, the Zumtobel Group is extending its network for the ongoing development and application of LED technology. In addition to further increasing its own in-house LED expertise, primarily located at its plants in Jennersdorf and Lustenau (Austria), early in 2007 the company had already reinforced its capabilities through the acquisition of Mytronic GmbH, which operates in the LED communications and media façade segments. Through its joint venture with Toyoda Gosei (initiated in 2005) and the recent onset of collaboration with the US LED manufacturer CREE, the lighting group has also secured access to high-performance LED chips. The strategic focus of the Zumtobel Group is on the use of LEDs in the professional lighting sector, with the accent on white light conversion and white light quality.

LED technology a core topic at the Light+Building fair:
At the Light+Building fair in Frankfurt am Main – the international lighting industry's premier event that closed its doors last Friday – LEDs were the centre of attention as the technology of the future. All Zumtobel Group brands showcased new products that use innovative LED technology: Zumtobel presented LED light tiles with video capability, LED spotlights and downlights, as well as an office luminaire with direct LED light. TridonicAtco displayed LED modules and the Thorn brand had LED street lanterns and façade lighting on show. Another big attraction was the stand set up by the Zumtobel LED Division's Ledon brand. As the Group's LED specialist, the LED Division is responsible for opening up new fields of application and target groups for LED technology.

"Along with the continuing interest in energy efficiency, the future technology LED was the core topic at the Light+Building fair. In the meantime, LEDs have reached a level of efficiency that increasingly allows them to be used in general-purpose lighting. With our technology network and our applications expertise, the Zumtobel Group is exceptionally well placed to benefit more than most from this trend. And in this respect the acquisition of SpaceCannon will make our progress even more dynamic," said CEO Andreas Ludwig.
 
About Zumtobel Group:
The Zumtobel Group, based in Dornbirn in the Vorarlberg region of Austria, is one of the few global players in the lighting industry. The Group, which started life as Elektrogeräte und Kunstharzpresswerk W. Zumtobel KG in 1950, today employs a workforce of almost 7,500 and in the 2006/07 financial year posted revenues of EUR 1,234.0 million. Under the leadership of its Management Board of Andreas J. Ludwig (CEO) and Thomas Spitzenpfeil (CFO), from 1 May 2008 the Group will comprise the following divisions: the Zumtobel Lighting Division deals with the luminaire business and includes the Thorn and Zumtobel brands. The Zumtobel Components Division (TridonicAtco) handles the lighting components business, while the Zumtobel LED Division supports the LED activities of the other Group brands, as well as opening up new customer segments through the Ledon brand.
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