It's official. The company that represents everything that's roughing up the traditional lighting companies has landed in Europe, opening its regional headquarters in, where else, Holland, the home of the industry's biggest company.
Take that Philips!
Yes, China's Opple Lighting has arrived in Best, Netherlands outside of Eindhoven, long a Philips stronghold and the city where the lighting giant previously housed its corporate headquarters in a former light bulb factory.
Shanghai-based Opple is a rapidly expanding LED specialist that is marching into countries around the globe with a strategy to underprice the venerable Philips', Osram's and GE's of the world, which it can probably afford to do because it does not carry the costs of a conventional lighting business the way the old timers do.
CEO Ma Xuihui – known in her home country as the Queen of Lighting – recently led Opple into India.
Opple actually opened the Best office back in March, and has staffed up considerably with former Philips professionals.
But earlier this month it feted its employees to an official opening, with all the flourish you might expect on such an occasion. CEO Ma cut the ribbon, and the queen even let them eat cake, judging by the company's website. Everyone exchanged hearty congratulations and well wishes for a prosperous future, and fireworks went off in the night sky.
Oh, and making use of Dutch natural resources, there were, of course, blondes. Lots of them, of the female variety with cars, as the photo above shows. How else do you sell lighting in the modern era?
We're not sure that's the best marketing technique in this day and age, but Opple is certainly not the only company practicing such clichés. (Dare we guess that at our two-day LuxLive exhibition in London on Nov. 19 and 20, not all eyes will be peeled all the time on the latest lamps and luminaires).
That's business. It remains to be seen whether the Best company will win. It certainly looks like it's off to a good global start.
Photo is from Opple