(BN) Vu1 in Talks With U.S. Retail ‘Big Boys’ to Sell Light Bulbs


Vu1 in Talks With U.S. Retail 'Big Boys' to Sell Light Bulbs
2011-01-18 07:55:43.901 GMT

By Alex Morales
Jan. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Vu1 Corp., a lighting-technology
developer, is holding talks with two major U.S. retailers to
sell its new energy-efficient light bulbs, Chief Executive
Officer Philip Styles said in an interview.
The New York-based company has started production at its
factory at Olomouc in the Czech Republic, and Styles said he
hopes to have arrangements with big U.S. retailers by the middle
of the year.
"We're in discussion with major retailers here in the
United States," the former Sony Corp. executive said yesterday
by telephone. "We're currently in discussions with two and I'm
trying to line up a third one. It's the big boys here in the
States," he said, declining to name the potential customers.
Vu1 is hoping to win a share of the lighting market as
countries including the 27 European Union members phase out
incandescent bulbs and the U.S. brings in more rigorous
efficiency standards in 2012.
The Czech plant is currently manufacturing "small
quantities" and the plan is to ramp up to a rate of 6.8 million
bulbs a year by year-end, and 30 million bulbs annually within
two or three years, Styles said. A product suitable for Europe
markets should be available by the end of 2011, he said.
Vu1 is promoting its lighting as cheaper than LEDs and,
unlike the more efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, doesn't
contain mercury, a poisonous substance.
"We're pitching our product in between the two main
competitors at this moment in time," Styles said, putting the
price of Vu1's bulb at just below $20 compared with about $40
for an LED and $12 to $13 for a compact fluorescent bulb.
The 19.5-watt bulb is priced at just below $20 compared
with about $40 for a similar LED and $12 to $13 for a compact
fluorescent bulb, he said.

For Related News and Information:
Top renewable energy story page: GREEN <GO>
Most-read environmental news: MNI ENV <GO>
Energy-efficiency stories: NI NRGEFF <GO>

--Editors: Randall Hackley, Todd White

To contact the reporter on this story:
Alex Morales in London at +44-20-7330-7718 or

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Reed Landberg at +44-20-7330-7862 or landberg@bloomberg.net.