(from Sports Business Journal, December 3, 2012) Panasonic Eco Solutions North America has signed a deal with Lighthouse Technologies to be the sole distributor of Lighthouse LED video display technology in the United States and Canada. The deal expands a relationship between Panasonic and Lighthouse and creates an alliance in a small but fragmented industry. Outside of Daktronics, an American firm producing scoreboards at its factory in South Dakota, a handful of international companies often combine their products and services to develop high-definition video displays for big league teams and college sports venues. Before the two companies signed the deal, they had already worked together to develop scoreboards for football stadiums at Ohio State and Michigan State, and Scotiabank Place, home of the Ottawa Senators
The main reason Panasonic wanted to formalize a deal with Lighthouse Technologies is because Panasonic is trying to drift away from producing LED display systems. Lighthouse Technologies seemed like the best choice to partner up with because of their capability to produce LED systems. “The goal of the partnership is to use Lighthouse’s capability as an LED manufacturer and layer in Panasonic’s technology, marketing support, and the logistical and technical services behind a $100 billion brand,” said Jim Doyle, President of Panasonic Eco Solutions North America. Doyle goes on to say, “Basically, every LED manufacturer has reached out to us. We evaluated the market … and based on a number of factors that are global in nature, we selected Lighthouse.”
This new deal should benefit teams and facilities facing investments of $10 million to $15 million by increasing the competition. “It consolidates and concentrates the individual talents of the existing Lighthouse distributors under the expanding Panasonic business model. It will motivate improved product development and drive more consistent pricing within the marketplace,” said Michael Rowe, a scoreboard development consultant with Anthony James Partners and a former sales manager with Lighthouse Technologies.