Regional Report Charlotte May 2011
Spotlight on: Nexxus Lighting
Why: Reached an agreement to sell its light-emitting-diode bulbs through Lowe’s, the nation’s second-largest hardware chain.
Incorporated: In Florida in 1991 as Super Vision International Inc., which went public in 1994.
How it got here: “Our mission is to grow rapidly. Charlotte, North Carolina, provides a more strategic and geographically central location on the east coast, in a state where LED technology and the technical talent is being embraced.” — 2007 press release announcing new name and headquarters.
Full-time employees: 33
Financials: Net loss of $8 million in 2010 on $5.4 million revenue, up 9% from ’09.
Patents: 33, with 29 more pending.
Manufacturing: Most is outsourced, including all of its Array brand, to plants in Mexico, China and Minnesota.
Price range of products on Lowe’s website: $8.98-$69.98
Chief competitors: Cree, General Electric, Osram Sylvania, Royal Philips Electronics, Acuity Brands Lighting, Cooper Lighting, Hubbell Lighting and Lithonia Lighting.
Positive current: The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, recently debated anew in Congress, sets higher energy-efficiency requirements on all bulbs, which is seen as a benefit to LED manufacturers and a problem for makers of incandescent bulbs.
The Park gets in gear
Downtown Charlotte might be rid of an eyesore just in time for the Democratic National Convention in August 2012. Construction resumed in March on The Park condo tower. The project was announced in 2000, but construction stalled, leaving a rusting shell. Developer Pete Verna filed for bankruptcy protection (cover story, December 2009). Small Brothers LLC, a Florida developer, took over in late 2009 and has been busy redesigning it and getting necessary permits. In addition to condos, the 22-story tower will now include a rooftop restaurant, a 172-room Hyatt Place Hotel and retail space on the ground floor.