Light Waves’ new factory will be tentatively located in Shanghai, China, with an initial staff of under 50 workers. The LED product lines will be re-branded LED*Waves and production will be headed by a Taiwanese physicist - as yet unnamed due to previous corporate confidentiality agreements - who will bring in a small team of designers and technicians.
The move signifies a major leap for the Brooklyn, New York-based company whose CEO, Joel Slavis, up until last year acted as engineer, sales manager and technical advisor.
Slavis has designed LEDs for a myriad of different applications, including traffic lights, safety evacuation systems and kitchen cabinet lights. Each light is engineered in Noho and components are subcontracted out to be assembled back on the company’s production line in Brooklyn.
Light Waves says that the new factory in China, where components are manufactured from the ground up, will enable the company to remain at the forefront of LED technology, and to control inventory while cutting costs dramatically.
The move comes on the heels of a third quarter which greatly surpassed expected growth. CEO Joel Slavis credits the 30% rise in sales, amidst a shaky economy, with the introduction of LEDs to an internet commerce site. The company began selling LEDs in 2003 and now stocks over 800 LED fixtures and bulbs, in addition to 1700 varieties of track lights.
This month, Light Waves introduced a 3-watt recessed High-Power LED Cabinet Light containing LEDs 25X stronger than standard LEDs. Another new product was the 88-LED Globe, a screw-in light bulb capable of producing between 30 to 45 watts, making it one of the first LEDs bright enough for ambient usage. The two will be among the first models to roll off the new production line.
Last month, Light Waves announced that it was to provide an LED evacuation system to the US Department of Defense.