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Leviton director of international business development, Paul Sherbo, spoke to Technical Review about the main growth opportunities in the region's lighting business
According to Sherbo, there has been a tremendous growth in lighting controls in the region over the last few years. This growth has come with heightened awareness of green solutions and green buildings.
"Leviton Lighting and Energy Solutions has been operating in the Middle East for around three years and initially offered network solutions, but we soon initiated a sales and support effort in launching our lighting and energy solutions," said Sherbo.
He explained that it took him by surprise that in a region where power costs are remarkably low, the demand for energy saving products was very high. The interest was initially from places like Kuwait and KSA, especially for government installations.
Sherbo said that Leviton's business is seeing growth overall in the region with increased focus in their lighting control solutions.
"We are now introducing sub-meters that measure electricity consumption and these growing in volume. But if you look at percentage growth, then wireless is coming on very strong," he added.
The growth has seen Leviton expand their operations in the region. The company added two people in Saudi Arabia and one in the UAE this year.
"This shows we are growing," he pointed out.
Sherbo explained that the wireless market had a slow uptake in UAE but is the fastest growing element in Leviton product line in terms of percentage of growth.
One of the main reasons for the slow uptake of wireless is that the Middle East has not seen much implementation of energy solutions in existing buildings, apart from stand alone occupancy sensing.
"We see the real concentration of energy saving lighting controls in new construction primarily and in this sense the region is swiftly joining the rest of the world in terms of adopting energy solution strategies," claimed Sherbo.
This push for energy efficient buildings in new builds can be seen across the GCC. Dubai is implementing it and Abu Dhabi wants to implement some kind of energy saving solution with the large number of construction projects going on in the emirate.
According to Sherbo, the biggest market in the region is in Saudi, which is also Leviton's main market. Most of the new buildings in the Kingdom include energy saving solutions and he claimed that the majority of the new mega cities and universities are implementing energy saving strategies.
Last year Leviton purchased Quantran Systems Limited, a well-known UK company, which has provided lighting control systems to key markets across the region.
The acquisition has enabled Leviton to strengthen its presence globally in the commercial lighting control systems sector and this has certainly been the case in Qatar, where a number of high-profile projects are in progress.