Ams Osram sells LED driver business to China’s Inventronics

June 17, 2022
The withdrawal from lighting systems and subsystems continues for the chip-focused company.

Ams Osram has agreed to sell its European and Asian LED driver business to China’s Inventronics, marking ams Osram’s latest unloading of lighting operations as it focuses on chip-level activity in LEDs, lasers, and sensors.

Neither Premstaetten, Austria–based ams nor Hangzhou-based Inventronics revealed the purchase price.

The business that ams is selling is called Digital Systems, also known as Digital Systems Eurasia. It’s based in Garching, Germany and has about 600 employees. Ams Osram sold the North American portion of Digital Systems to Acuity Brands a year ago, and had been searching for a buyer for Eurasia since then.

Digital Systems is known for LED drivers (power components), LED light engines, electronic ballasts, and components for internet connectivity.

In announcing the most recent sale, ams Osram said, “The ams Osram Europe and Asia Digital Systems business develops mainly power supplies with related light modules, software, and connectable components for traditional and LED illumination.”

It also noted that “these are essential components for luminaires in professional lighting applications that enable smart lighting solutions and digitalization.”

That would seem to make a good match with LED driver supplier Inventronics, a publicly traded company with manufacturing facilities in China, India, and Mexico, and distribution centers in the U.S. and Holland.

We are very excited about this transaction,” said Inventronics CEO Marshall Miles. “We fully believe it will enable us to create even more value for our customers, employees, and shareholders. The combined portfolio and capabilities, coupled with the fact that we will not be competing with our customers, should make us the first choice for LED drivers with a very large portion of the market.”

Garching will continue to serve as a “vital facility,” an Inventronics spokesperson told LEDs Magazine.

But when pressed for more information on how Inventronics will absorb Digital Systems’ people, locations, and operations, neither Inventronics nor ams Osram provided clarity. It appears that some management roles will not carry over.

“I believe that all full-time DS-Eurasia employees that desire to join Inventronics will be made offers to do so,” an Inventronics spokesperson told LEDs. “It is anticipated that we will also be hiring to replace some of the corporate functions that are not transferring.”

While noting that “the executive team from DS-Eurasia will be welcomed at Inventronics,” he also said that “roles and responsibilities will likely change for many people as we restructure to optimize for the expanded organization.”

He added, “We do not anticipate any major location changes in the short term.”

An ams Osram spokesperson said only that “the integration planning phase will only start shortly.”

LED drivers and internet connectivity systems are no longer the remit of ams Osram. Since acquiring Munich-based Osram in July 2020, ams has held true to its intention of exiting finished illumination systems as it emphasizes semiconductors for not just illumination but also all sorts of other areas, including health monitoring and the artificial and virtual realities of the “metaverse,” to name a few.

In the second-most recent of a long list of sell-offs, ams last month agreed to sell its Hong Kong–based Traxon Technologies architectural and façade lighting outfit to Hong Kong’s Prosperity Group. Readers will find a longer list of transactions at that link, but it should be noted that ams has been so intent on leaving lighting systems behind that it even agreed to unload Austin, TX–based Fluence, which provides lighting to the high-growth horticultural market. That sale, to Signify, closed in May.

One lighting entity that is still part of the ams Osram stable is entertainment group Clay Paky. Ams Osram has stated it plans to sell Clay Paky this year.

MARK HALPER is a contributing editor for LEDs Magazine, and an energy, technology, and business journalist ([email protected]).

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About the Author

Mark Halper | Contributing Editor, LEDs Magazine, and Business/Energy/Technology Journalist

Mark Halper is a freelance business, technology, and science journalist who covers everything from media moguls to subatomic particles. Halper has written from locations around the world for TIME Magazine, Fortune, Forbes, the New York Times, the Financial Times, the Guardian, CBS, Wired, and many others. A US citizen living in Britain, he cut his journalism teeth cutting and pasting copy for an English-language daily newspaper in Mexico City. Halper has a BA in history from Cornell University.