Silicon Valley exec joins LED industry

Silicon Valley exec joins LED industryThe former CEO of storage manufacturer Seagate has take a position to head up the LED lighting firm Bridgelux. Bill Watkins left his former company last year and it was confirmed in the middle of last week that he would be joining a growing number of ex-Silicon Valley CEOs who have decided to work at the greener end of the technology industry.

Mr Watkins has spent his year out of employment examining the various green technology products that are currently in development and concluded that LED systems have the most potential for rapid growth.

In a statement released on Tuesday of last week, Mr Watkins said that the LED industry presented a $100 billion business opportunity, but that the current market leaders lacked the proper resources to make the most of this opportunity.

The new CEO is planning on spreading into international markets with his company. At the moment Bridgelux is one of the only companies to have developed a technique for producing LED systems that is cheaper than the existing methods of manufacturing standard incandescent lighting.

LEDs are seen by many as the future of lighting and display technology, with power consumption of 60 per cent less than traditional technology, which means that an 8 watt LED light can provide the same level of illumination as a 60 watt incandescent bulb.

Mr Watkins said that he had become interested in the LED industry and green technology because of a desire to combat climate change, but the significant growth and financial potential that he anticipates will certainly have been factors in his decision.

For Mr Watkins it is the lack of a need for government subsidies that makes running an LED manufacturer so attractive. The target audience of Bridgelux under its new CEO is set to be everyone on the planet.

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