Brightgreen is 5 today!
16th April 2013
It's now five years since Brightgreen began, and it's been a bit of a rollercoaster along the way. The story starts with two Perth brothers, Dave and Barry O'Driscoll. Together they had a long entrepreneurial history, stretching back to their schooldays when they ran everything from lolly cartels to members-only BMX clubs. Eventually they ended up running a number of product development companies.
As both Barry and Dave care deeply about sustainability, they were disturbed by how widespread planned obsolescence is throughout industry (the strategy of deliberately designing things to break). They spotted that there was both a gap in the market for products that would last and a new technology available - LED-based lighting – to make it happen. They designed and developed the world's first LED equivalent to 50w halogens (the D900 Curve) in their garage and managed to find a venture capitalist willing to make the initial investment. So far, so good...
A week later, the global financial crisis hit and the investor pulled out. Barry and Dave had to sell everything, to the point where they couldn't even afford a cup of coffee. They scraped together just enough money to launch the D900 and sent a press release out. The chief executive of Becton saw it, decided to buy half a million dollar's worth of lights, and Brightgreen was off!
It took two years before Brightgreen got out on the other side of the financial crisis. A year later, we opened in Johannesburg, followed by Lüdenscheid in Germany the year after. Fittingly, this small town, known as "Lighting City", just happens to be where planned obsolescence originally began in the 1920's. Today, Brightgreen has distributors in New Zealand, Kenya, Chile, the Middle East and Indonesia. We've earned numerous awards and patents, and have more products than ever before. This year will be an especially big one, with a whopping 144 new products due for release. We'd like to say a big thank you to all our partners whose hard work helped get us where we are today. Here’s to the next 5 years!