With the iLight and Zero 88 brands, Cooper has been strong in both the architectural and entertainment segments, but this is the first time that Cooper will have a major presence in the energy management sector.
Watford-based ALC is a privately-owned manufacturer and supplier that supplies £3.3 million worth of lighting control modules annually to commercial, public sector and healthcare projects every year.
‘We’ve been developing that three-tiered platform in North America and now ALC has brought us that third platform to the UK,’ said Walma. ‘We could have spent a few million pounds and hired a few people but here we get the knowledge and the experience of all the people in ALC – and that value is really priceless.’ He continued: ‘We have a product with name recognition here in the UK and we can gain synergistic sales. If you look at a typical scheme such as a university, they’ll have architectural and commercial lighting controls in there, [so] we can meet both of those needs.
‘Both iLight and ALC can cross fertilise,’ said UK chief Jeremy Cope. ‘We can grow both parts of those sectors in the
UK. The past 18 months have been depressed but we are expecting growth to return in 2011. There have been massive quote rates, and those projects haven’t gone away, and they will happen.’
The ALC brand will be retained in the UK but increasingly products from Cooper’s US energy management division, Greengate, will form part of the offer. This could include the latter’s real-time energy monitoring equipment.
ALC, traditionally strong in Scotland and the north, will be geographically complementary to iLight, which has had a southern focus. The sales team will sell both brands.