The White House Business Council invited small business owners and entrepreneurs from across the country to a forum we hosted with Business Forward earlier this month. While they were here, we spoke to some of the people we met about the secrets of their success, and found out how the American Jobs Act will enable them to grow even more quickly in 2012.
In 2008, John McCarty and Patrick O’Flaherty teamed up to reinvent the light fixture. O'Flaherty, a 20-year veteran of the lighting industry, designed LUX dynamics’ fixtures to save energy while McCarty, who is an architectural engineer, applied his past experience bringing innovative products to market to find an audience for the fixtures, which are made of lightweight extruded aluminum rather than pressed steel for a long-lasting design. They are also intentionally easy to install, a key differentiator in the marketplace, and save users and contractors money while also conserving energy.
Today the fixtures are used in commercial/industrial applications such as school gyms, sports arenas, and correctional facilities but in the beginning, it wasn’t clear that McCarty and Flaherty would be able to produce their innovative designs, which could not be built using conventional equipment. McCarty says, “We had to make a choice to either change our design to something that was similar to what manufacturers’ already made or start from scratch making light fixtures in an entirely new way. We chose the latter, which enabled us to make better products, revolutionizing the industry.”
LUX products are all made in the USA and the company partners with Alpha Production Technologies, a Sparks, Nevada organization that employs people with disabilities, to manufacture subassemblies. At least half of the components are purchased from businesses in Reno and Sparks. The American Jobs Act would enable LUX dynamics to grow their business and create more jobs in Nevada. “The investments in renovating/modernizing schools with energy efficient measures would increase our potential business opportunities since our primary market is manufacturing energy efficient lighting for schools,” says McCarty. “And the hiring tax credit would encourage me to create the jobs needed for us to grow.”