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Articles May - June 2019

THE FAMOUS STORY

Armed with a degree in Marketing and Finance and International Business from University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, and Aston University respectively, and after learning the dynamics of the Indian business world at Fanatic Sports and GVK..... read more

FIXINTOGETMIXIN with Brad Divens

Renowned FOH engineer Brad Divens who is currently mixing for Enrique Iglesias and has mixed for Linkin Park, Garbage, Cyndi Lauper, HIM, Bob Seger and countless others in the past, was in Mumbai for doing what he loves to do most...... read more

BToS Productions - The Rising Star

Nazeef Mohommed, the frontman of an immensely young, passionate and growing enterprise – BToS Productions talks to Ankita Bhadrawale about their overall plans for the future and his recipe to designing, curating and executing the event..... read more

The Next Dimension Of Stage Production

Popularly referred to as India’s equivalent of the Academy Awards; the 64th edition of the Filmfare Awards, presented by The Times Group, continued its legacy of honouring artistic and technical excellence in the Hindi film industry of India......... read more

Complete Audio Solutions from Honeywell

Honeywell is the new entrant on the block in the professional sound segment with ‘Honeywell ProSound’. The series is a perfect adjacency to Honeywell’s current PAVA business offering solutions to new verticals like hospitality, entertainment...... read more

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11 Questions with Eric Loader---- September October2017 Issue!


From having established Light Force, Towards 2000’s import / distribution, to growing sales for American DJ’s moving light products, to pushing sales at Martin Professional for 12 years and eventually heading up sales at Elation Lighting, Eric Loader’s long history in the lighting industry and passion for lighting has seen Elation slowly creating its own identity, away from ADJ in the last couple of years. Here Loader talks about his three decade journey, Elation products and his perception of the lighting industry vis-à-vis technology, trends and the Indian market.
Director of Sales, Elation Professional
Lighting, Inc.

1. Tell us about your three decade journey in the lighting industry? What have been some of the highs and lows?

Well, it’s certainly been a fantastic journey all along the way for me and I am very fortunate to be where I am today. Beginning in the industry as a DJ, I found myself attracted to lighting more than sound from the beginning. While I appreciate a great sounding system, the lighting “makes or breaks” an event or venue’s success. From concerts to nightclubs, I always found myself “looking up” at the lighting in the rig. Moving lights were just coming into existence when I started back then and computer-controlled or automated lighting quickly got my attention. Even during my first jobs doing lighting for Pegasus Productions or Towards 2000, I used to stay late after work and on the weekends to play in the showroom and programs lights. I enjoyed getting hands on by installing and building up productions but since I was studying business marketing in school, I quickly got more into the sales / distribution side of the business during my second year of college. Like any business or career, it’s the relationships you develop and hold on to which measure your success. The lows are when you move on from working with colleagues to accept new opportunities. But knowing you will always be friends gives some solace. Having worked on the manufacturing side for some of the largest companies in the industry (American DJ, Martin Professional and now Elation Professional) the one thing you can always count on is change and progress. You have to always keep moving forward but respect where you have been along the way.

2. After nearly 30 years what excites you about lighting technology and the lighting industry today?

Technology is moving very fast. Although it’s been 30 years, the time has flown by as new products come out year after year that push the technology envelope. The merging of lighting and video has also been a great achievement and the immersion of audiences into the stage or venue design has come a long way. Ultimately, seeing what the products can do at an event you attend and how they can enhance the experience is what I enjoy the most. Hearing the crowd go “WOW” when a specific lighting cue is executed, or seeing the lights make people rise out of their seats or onto the dancefloor, gives me a great rush!

3. What were the main factors that helped Elation develop international identity, recognition and respect?

Having the right team of people with the vision and dedication towards our goal of offering the best performance / quality / value ratio in the professional lighting markets has been the key. At the end of the day, you have to offer a good product and some innovation to set yourself apart from the rest. We take a lot of input from the market, talking to lighting designers and business owners on what their needs are and how we can help them achieve their vision on projects or build on their success.

4. What according to you was the first lighting innovation that identified Elation lighting as a major brand? And in which year did Elation launch this innovation?

It actually started before I got to Elation with the Design Spot 250 in 2005. It was one of the first “pro” grade moving heads at an affordable price with all the features LD’s wanted and they quickly made their way into rental companies and installations around the world. Elation was also one of the first entertainment lighting companies to use LEDs in traditional theatrical PAR design with our Opti RGB Par unit in 2006.

5. How much is Elation Lighting invested into Research & Development?

We have a dedicated team working on sourcing the latest key component technology in optics, lighting sources and electronics. With our engineering staff located here at our World Headquarter in Los Angeles, California, as well as key members at our office in Europe, we work with key component manufacturing partners around the world to bring the best quality components into our product designs. Combined with our product marketing team that takes feedback and industry knowledge from many sources, our product pipeline is planned anywhere from 12-36 months ahead. A lot of new technologies we use come from other industries, military or the consumer market that pays for a lot of the big R&D costs to make new technology available to our small entertainment industry. Most of the key improvements and big developments in recent years has been around LED and HID lamp technology. In the big picture, we work in a very small industry compared to consumer or military technologies.

6. From your vantage position, what do you think is going to be the next biggest innovation in lighting after LED?

Laser phosphor engines seem to be what is driving development in other industries – when you look at auto headlights and video projectors. I think this technology, which offers improved efficacy and performance, will make its way into our industry. We have already been working with this technology for the past 12 months and are very close to putting a product out on the market that uses it.

7. Is demand for lighting in entertainment more challenging in the US and Europe, than in countries like India or China?

The demands are certainly higher today mainly because of the budgets on projects in the US and Europe which seems to drive a lot of the new product development. As the budgets for projects grow in India and China, so will the demand for the latest technology and solutions.

8. Is there any Chinese lighting brand that has reached European or American levels in terms of quality? If yes, which is that brand.

Yes, sure – in fact, some of those “brands” have been building OEM for many EU/US brands for years. Our products are made in China but designed in California so, at the end of the day, it comes down to the product’s design, specification, quality control, support and service you get from your brand supplier, regardless of where the products are made. Elation prides itself and builds into our products an extra level of quality to ensure long term performance. Many China brands can make their products cheaper by changing features or key components or using sub-par raw materials to meet their market price. Because we offer a 2-year warranty on our products – we cannot lower our quality standards, just to meet a market “price point”. As you know, there are many iPhone clones in China but like Apple (another successful California-based company) the engineering and quality control that goes into their products is second to none and Elation is working towards this goal as well.

9. What is your perception of the global market for professional lighting products and how do you think India fits into this global scenario?

India has an amazing market and appreciation for live events and experiences. Elation has enjoyed continuous success with our products in India thanks to our innovation and value. Elation, which started in the US 25 years ago, has steadily grown into a global brand expanding our success in the US to Europe the past 10 years and now to other parts of the world. As we expand around the globe with strong local partners, our model proves to continue to work in other countries. We recently opened a facility in Mexico and have enjoyed quick and rapid growth. With our strong distribution partner in India, I am sure we can continue this growth there.

10. Tell us about your engagement with the Indian market and what strategies is Elation adopting to market or further popularize the Elation brand in India?

Star Dimensions has been distributing Elation products in India for the past 5 years. Despite lots of “china brand” competition, our sales continue to grow as customers realize the added cost for Elation quality, pays off for them in the long term. While our products are still typically 25-30% less than the other top Western brands, we are still often 25-50% more than China brands because of the features and quality we build into our products. So this takes time to prove to the market that the extra investment in Elation will bring a better ROI to the consumers.

11. In India, in which segment (fixed install, rental etc.) do you see most potential for Elation lighting?

So far, it’s been in rental / production, where we have seen the most success. Rental companies appreciate our quality and ROI they get with our products and because lighting designers specify the Elation product on riders, they are able to give them what they want when they travel to India.



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