Underscoring the ongoing importance of Internet-connected lighting to its long-term strategy, Sweden’s Fagerhult Group has tapped an executive steeped in marketing IoT devices — but not lighting — to run its largest division.
Edwin Roobol will join the company on September 1 as the new head of the Collection business area, coming over from networked security camera firm Axis Communications where he has been the director of marketing for the Europe, Middle East, and Africa region.
Fagerhult has not formally announced the hiring but has posted Roobol’s name and start date on the management section of its website.
Axis, based in Lund, Sweden, is part of the imaging group at Japan’s Canon Inc., which in addition to Axis networked cameras includes facial recognition software, people counting, and cloud-based video analytics, among other offerings.
Roobol's experience in marketing networked cameras could help Fagerhult’s long-gestating push into connected IoT lighting, an area that might finally be picking up steam for Fagerhult but which continues to be a challenge for the company and for the lighting industry as a whole.
Roobol will take over as top person in Collection from Fagerhult CEO Bodil Sonesson. She has been temporarily serving double duty following the departure of former Collection boss Mario Dreismann, who held the post for less than a year.
Collection houses Fagerhult’s design and architectural brands: Italy's iGuzzini, Sweden's ateljé Lyktan, and Germany's LED Linear and WE-EF, all of which include both indoor and outdoor lines.
Sonesson has established IoT lighting as an important element of Fagerhult’s future across all of its 12 brands, not just the four in Collection.
But in a sign that design flair does not preclude connectivity, the Collection group also harbors Fagerhult’s Citygrid outdoor networking and controls, which is the rebranded technology that Fagerhult acquired when it bought out Denmark’s Seneco A/S in April 2021.
Like Roobol, Sonesson herself joined Habo-based Fagerhult from Axis, with no particular background in lighting. She has helmed the company since October 2018.
Roobol marks at least the second executive Sonesson has hired with no lighting experience but with an Axis background. Chief technology officer Johan Lembre joined Fagerhult last September.
MARK HALPER is a contributing editor for LEDs Magazine, and an energy, technology, and business journalist ([email protected]).