Thursday, September 15th, 2016
Lumitec was founded with a simple idea in mind. Rather than follow the extreme environment lighting industry, Lumitec would drive it forward. And yet, less than a year after the company was founded, it seemed as though the new startup was never going to have a chance. Due to rising gas prices and a global recession, the marine industry, one of Lumitec’s main markets, was dealt a massive blow. In 2008 and 2009, hundreds of dealers were forced out of business as new boat sales decreased by almost 80%. Rather than shrink in fear or give up, the company’s founder and CEO John Kujawa had a clear message: charge on.
While competitors were trying to cut costs at every turn and began shelving product innovations, Kujawa led the company in an immense product development push. Rather than cut spending, the business used its funds to aggressively research and adapt to customer needs. Lumitec adopted a “product first” mindset, meaning that it worked, and continues to work, toward creating products that go beyond merely what the customer wants.
Kujawa often brings up the Henry Ford quote, “If I’d asked customers what they wanted they would have said ‘faster horses.’” While competitors were working on merely providing the customer with what they described, Lumitec sought to create innovative and technologically superior products.
Today, that same mindset of “product first” still applies. The company has a strong and well-staffed engineering team that is encouraged to experiment and explore, to play around with ideas they may have. In order to give Lumitec’s engineers the tools they need to bring their ideas to life, the facility is equipped with a state of the art prototype lab, a CNC machining center, laser cutter, a 3D printer and many more useful tools to allow for innovation and creativity. This team of engineers goes above and beyond to not only meet customer needs, but to fully understand what the lighting is going to be used for. In one instance, a Lumitec engineer rode with a sanitation driver on his shift in order to fully understand what the lighting needs would be.
This type of creative research is all due to Kujawa’s leadership. Last year, Lumitec’s founder was recognized by Florida Governor Rick Scott for his contributions to the community with the “Governor’s Business Ambassador” award. And the governor isn’t the only one to recognize Kujawa’s vision for his company makes for a sound investment. Its customers often give Lumitec high praise, and the company has seen its market share grow. In under ten years, it has risen to become the industry standard for innovation and quality.
The boat industry rebuilt itself, and Lumitec grew with it. It now works with over 200 boat builders worldwide and is relied upon by the United States Coast Guard and Special Forces. Lumitec owns and operates two vessels which serve as testing labs for its products. In everything it does, Lumitec ensures the products it creates are constantly pushing the industry forward.
Having been born in the midst of difficult times, the company is now charging on, stronger than ever, with John Kujawa standing firmly at the helm. To read more about Lumitec’s history or contact a member of the team, visit lumiteclighting.com today!