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Florida Bank Makes Investment with Arkon

Wauchula State Bank contracted with Arkon Power to bring its exterior lighting up to code and save money in the process.

Wauchula State Bank in Florida needed new site lighting to meet state illumination requirements, and Arkon Power’s LED lighting was the first place the company turned.

“We were committed to LED because we knew it was more efficient, and we knew we would be able to get a lot more consistency out of it,” said Toby Sapp, Wauchula State Bank maintenance technician.

The banking group is in the process of transitioning its eight Central Florida branches to 100% LED lighting, and Sapp said Arkon Power has been nearly flawless in helping it achieve its mission so far.

“Arkon is easy to work with and has a representative we can reach out to and have on the phone and present usually within minutes, not hours,” Sapp said. “Arkon stands behind its product and gives us a level of confidence we are very much in need of.”

Since starting work with Wauchula, Arkon has updated the parking lot lighting at multiple branches to ensure it meets the safety requirements of customers and regulators. Arkon has also installed LED lighting under several of Wauchula’s canopies and provided wall pack lighting for drive through facilities. In all cases, Arkon has provided photometric plans to ensure Wauchula has the foot candles on the ground it needs.

“The customer and Sapp knew what they wanted in terms of light quality, and we knew how to get them there,” Arkon Technical Manager Graham Brown said.

Arkon has also provided interior lighting for Wauchula, and Sapp said the company has exceeded his expectations on all dimensions.

“Whenever we have the opportunity, we have recommended Arkon to others in the area,” Sapp said.

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about this or any of Arkon Power’s other projects.

Arkon Shines New Light on Florida Agriculture with LED Lighting Solution

Arkon’s partnership with a produce company has improved working conditions and the client’s bottom line.

Inside a Veg-King of Florida packing plant, summer watermelons pour in by the busload. Workers on the line sort each passing melon by hand according to size, shape and color. They shout numbers—“36! 45! 60!”—as they categorize each melon. Once they’re cleaned and packed, the melons are stacked on pallets to await shipping to your local supermarket.

For more than 55 years, the Harris family has operated Veg-King, growing the business from its early days as a 50 by 50-foot facility in the small town of Bowling Green, FL. But this year, the watermelon house is looking a lot brighter.

Instead of firing up outdated metal halide light fixtures, waiting through humming, flickering and a five-minute warm up, D.R. Harris can now get right to work when he arrives at the plant. Why? Veg-King and Arkon Power worked together in early May to install new high Bay LEDs,

Veg-King workers are now wasting no time waiting on lights, and with higher wattage fixtures over the sorting area, they are able to see the difference. “They’ve been great. We’ve been able to actually work faster now that watermelons are being sorted quicker,” Harris said.

And with supermarkets like Publix as customers, Veg-King has a lot of orders to fill.

“We’re sending out around half a million pounds of watermelon a day,” Harris said.

Veg-King plans to fit all its locations with high bay LEDs during the off season. That includes a packing house 50 yards from the watermelon facility, where they’ve been preparing produce since early spring. Veg-King is currently moving about 2,500 bushels of cucumbers a day.

Harris is a third generation produce broker who understands the importance of implementing new and innovative technologies into business operations. “Things are different from 55 years ago,” he said. “We have to adapt to new technology to keep the produce moving.” With Arkon’s cutting edge LED technology, that’s exactly what they’ve done.

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about LED lighting in the agriculture industry or any of Arkon Power’s other projects.

Arkon Provides LED Lighting to Secure Church

Orlando-based Church in the Son wanted to improve its parking lot lighting. LEDs proved to be a revelation.

As a worshipper was leaving Orlando’s Church in the Son one night in December, her son asked if she needed an escort to her car. “No thanks,” she said. “They put out new parking lights, so it’s much brighter out there.”

It was music to Church in the Son administrators’ ears.

The house of worship had contracted with Arkon Power to replace its legacy metal halide parking lot fixtures several months earlier, and the project’s central goal was improving churchgoer safety.

“The first concern we had was that our parking lot was very dark,” said Carla Kong, Church in the Son operations director. “Our lights were old-school and yellowish, and we knew we wanted to go bright. Safety was our number one reason.”

With assistance from Arkon Technical Manager Graham Brown and his team, which completed a thorough photometric analysis, the church elected to replace its 37 400-watt metal halides with nine 320-watt LED street lights and 28 240-watt LED street lights.

The result is more foot-candles on the ground, daylight-like ambient illumination, and a decrease in power consumption. And while Kong says Church in the Son “at first wasn’t even thinking about” how much they’d save on their power bill, the nearly 40% reduction in energy consumption was “a nice bonus down the line.”

Arkon worked closely with an electrical contractor to complete the installation, and Kong said the project went smoothly from beginning to end.

“The attention and the follow-up process was very good,” she said. “The communication was great.”

Church in the Son was able to raise all the capital necessary for the installation from member donations, and Kong said all of the church’s parishioners have been happy with the results.

“Over all, we’ve accomplished everything we were looking for,” she said.

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about this or any of Arkon Power’s other projects.

Arkon Connects With Community

Partnership with Salvation Army helps combat generational poverty

Arkon Power recently sponsored the local Salvation Army’s 4th Annual Doing the Most Good Dinner, an event that generates proceeds for the organization’s Pathway of Hope program.

“It’s a program to break the cycle of intergenerational poverty,” said Lindsay Crossland, director of development for the Salvation Army of Clearwater & Upper Pinellas. “We want to make these changes for good, instead of keeping people in this cycle of poverty for generations.”

Arkon Power chose to be involved in the Doing the Most Good event and support the Salvation Army because it values the community in which it operates, according to Director of Business Development Eleni Lelekis.

“Our goal is not only to help our customers improve as places of business, but to help the communities we serve in Florida and beyond improve as places to live,” she said. “We value everyone we live and work with not only as customers, but as people.”

The Arkon Power team attended the 4th Annual Doing the Most Good Dinner, held at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort on Sept. 28, to learn more about how it can assist the Salvation Army in its mission to serve. Through Pathway of Hope, the Army provides individualized services to families with children to allow them to break the cycle of crisis and vulnerability that repeats generation after generation. The program seeks to address the root causes of poverty, Crossland said.

Last year, the Salvation Army served more than 57,000 people in Clearwater and Upper Pinellas County. For its sponsorship of the annual Doing the Most Good dinner, Arkon Power will be featured on the Salvation Army truck in the coming year. The truck is not only driven throughout Pinellas County on a daily basis, but it has also appeared at special events and media opportunities, including the Tampa Bay Rays Christmas in July game, Red Kettle Campaign kick-off with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Walmart Fill-the-Truck events, Red Kettle Campaign opportunities with Bay News 9, Angel Tree media opportunities with ABC, and many more.

“We’re truly honored to see our name associated with an organization as devoted to improving the plight of the poor and disadvantaged as the Salvation Army,” Lelekis said. “It’s a partnership Arkon Power hopes to continue for many years to come.”

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about Arkon Power and its involvement in the local community.

Arkon Illuminates Spiritual Grounds

A regional church collective has brightened the campus of its Florida location with new LED fixtures.

Diane Brown knew retreat goers visiting the Clearwater, Florida church she directs appreciated its four retreat houses on 14 acres of lakeside grounds. And she didn’t want that appreciation to end once the sun went down.

“We have a beautiful piece of land with paths where people can walk around,” Brown said. “Now they can do it at night.”

What’s changed? The church, Our Lady of Divine Providence House of Prayer, headquarters of the Marian Servants who operate throughout the Southeast, recently installed LED light fixtures with the help of Arkon Power. The 160-, 120-, 80- and 40-watt flood lights not only allow visitors to enjoy the church grounds, they make worshipers feel safer, according to Brown.

What’s more, the church director said the fixtures come with low maintenance costs and stand to save the church more than 70% on its energy bill annually.

Our Lady of Divine Providence House of Prayer has also installed new LED lighting in its 325-person chapel, where Brown said “the lights were burning out fast and costing us a lot of money because we have to leave them on often.”

While Brown said she’s still waiting to see her first electric bill after installing the exterior lights, she’s already seen the benefits of the indoor LEDs, not only in reduced energy costs but also in her maintenance bills. Where the church had previously been changing out entire light fixtures, they’re now changing single bulbs—and doing so rarely.

Brown said she’s recommended the same lighting changes to other churches in the Marian Servants network because the finances make so much sense—“they’re less expensive and last longer, it’s that simple,” she said.

Eleni Lelekis, Arkon’s director of business development, said working with a group like the Marian Servants has shined a light on an exciting opportunity for the company going forward.

“We love working with groups who have the best interest of their patrons at heart, and we truly believe LEDs can improve the customer experience for almost any organization,” she said.

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about this or any of Arkon LED’s other projects.

Arkon Power Adds New Sales Rep & Contractor

New hires bring team into “peak form,” according to company executives.

Arkon Power has continued to grow its sales and operations team, adding John Johnson as a new sales representative and Richard Elzey as a contractor.

Johnson has been in sales for nearly a decade and has handled products from textbooks to collegiate apparel and accessories. He spent five years as a pharmaceutical sales rep for Pfizer before moving into the LED space about two years ago.

“I’m very familiar with the lighting sales cycle,” Johnson said. “Because it’s a slightly longer cycle, it’s all about establishing a good relationship, and you really have to listen to the customer. I think that’s true in every business, but especially in lighting sales.”

As Arkon continues to increase its market penetration, Johnson sees great potential to grow the company’s name recognition and increase sales numbers.

“The great thing is LEDs have now been around long enough that people have studied up on them and have good information,” he said. “You’re speaking with people that already know LEDs are the best route for their company.”

Elzey has 25 years of contracting experience, both in the field and as senior instructor for the Florida-based Contractors Institute. He teaches examination preparation and continuing education classes around the state and holds a certified general contractors license and various specialized licenses. Arkon Director of Business Development Eleni Lelekis said he’s added considerably to the company’s capabilities.

“Richard has been an invaluable addition to the team,” she said. “He offers an attention to detail that I know our customers are going to appreciate.”

Lelekis said Elzey and Johnson have shown initiative since joining the team and are poised to help build Arkon’s hard earned reputation as a leader in lighting solutions.

“Our sales and operations teams are now in peak form,” Lelekis said. “We look forward to seeing these new relationships grow with time.”

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about the Arkon Power team and its capabilities.

Arkon Visits China & California for Market Research

Lighting controls and fixture designs stand out as major industry advancements.

Arkon Power executives recently made trips to San Diego, Calif., and Hong Kong to enhance the company’s knowledge of new lighting technology and product lines.

Arkon Director of Business Development Eleni Lelekis and Technical Manager Graham Brown attended Lightfair International 2016 in San Diego from April 24 to 28. It was the third time Arkon representatives had attended the event, billed as the “world’s largest annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show and conference.”

Brown said the fair was well attended this year and offered a chance to vet the industry’s latest advancements.

“Not only are we constantly trying to stay on the leading edge of LED technology, but we’re also seeing some major improvements in lighting controls,” Brown said. “It’s something we’re now feeling confident bringing to our customers as these intelligent, network-based controlling systems become more efficient.”

Lelekis said the ability to integrate solar energy solutions into lighting systems showed promise at the lighting industry event, and the educational seminars were also beneficial.

“We attended several courses on controls as that’s a place where we think we can really help our customers as we move into more comprehensive energy savings solutions,” she said. “We were also able to further our knowledge of lighting ordinances in states outside our existing coverage areas.”

Brown traveled to China on a fact finding mission in early April, visiting multiple manufacturing sites with Arkon Foreign Purchasing Manager Clement Yuen (pictured above at left) and attending the spring edition of Hong Kong International Lighting Fair 2016.

Brown said in addition to advanced lighting controls that stand to save customers even more money, the major advancement he’s seeing is in the aesthetics of lighting fixtures.

“We’ve recently seen some really sleek looking lights on the market and interesting designs that can serve in unique installation environments,” Brown said. “It all comes at a perfect time, as our customers are becoming more knowledgeable of LED technology and demanding new options.”

Brown’s trip overseas represented the fifth time an Arkon representative has traveled from the company’s Florida headquarters to China. Lelekis said it’s important for Arkon, which sources lighting both domestically and abroad, to be in personal contact with its manufacturers.

“By getting into these facilities and seeing their processes, not only do we advance our knowledge of the product line, but we can learn how we can help our vendors operate more efficiently,” she said.

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about Arkon’s latest travels or any of its industry-leading LED lighting solutions.

New online feature offers graphic display of Arkon LED’s nationwide reach

Arkon LED has in the last year grown from a Southeastern U.S. LED upstart to an established provider of lighting solutions in nine states and in Canada. A selection of the company’s LED installations is now on display at http://arkonled.com/your-installation-experience/jobs-completed.

“The growth we’ve seen in the last three to four quarters has been astounding,” Director of Business Development Eleni Lelekis said. “Once we established ourselves as an industry leading LED solutions provider in the Southeast, word traveled around the country.”

Arkon LED has done jobs as far west as Las Vegas, Nev., and as far north as Windsor, Ontario. The company has completed installations in the Northeast, Rocky Mountains, Texas and the bayou of Louisiana. The 42 jobs now highlighted on the Arkon LED website are not comprehensive but offer a representative sample of the breadth of the company’s reach, according to Lelekis.

And, more jobs are coming soon.

“Our operations people are going to be busy through the first quarter of next year,” Lelekis said. “We’re scheduling installations as fast as we can take the orders.”

Arkon representatives said the projects map will be updated continuously as the company’s backlog of jobs are added and new jobs are completed. Check back regularly to watch as Arkon LED grows, and email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about any of Arkon LED’s individual projects.

International Affair Introducing Arkon’s Man in China

Arkon LED is a U.S.-based company, but a number of other countries have developed into leading players in the light emitting diode sector. China in particular has one of the world’s fastest growing LED manufacturing industries. To stay on top of what’s happening in the Far East and elsewhere, Arkon has positioned an in-house purchaser in Hong Kong.

As the company’s foreign purchasing agent, Clement Yuen brings multinational experience to the Arkon LED team. Yuen graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, before working in sales, marketing, purchasing and manufacturing in multiple industries, including toys, sporting goods and computers. Yuen has worked in China and Hong Kong for the last 20 years and now turns his expertise in supply chain management to the LED market.

“With experience living in both the U.S. and China, Yuen is uniquely positioned to act as Arkon LED’s foreign liaison,” LED Sales Guy Greg Papandrew said. “We couldn’t be more fortunate to have someone with his supply chain and manufacturing expertise on the ground in the Eastern Hemisphere at all times.”

Papandrew first met Yuen on a fact finding trip to Hong Kong in 2014. The two have quickly developed a working relationship that allows Arkon to find the best solutions for its clients’ lighting needs, wherever they are in the world.

“I was immediately struck with Arkon’s willingness to learn about LED manufacturing the world over,” Yuen said. “I only hope to contribute to the company’s goal of being a true global player in this industry.”

To learn more about Arkon’s growing sales and manufacturing team, please contact us at Info@ArkonPower.com .

Arkon Helps Dress Up Historic Downtown with Decorative LED Lighting

Palm Harbor, Florida, is bathed in high quality light thanks to new LED fixtures.

Historic Downtown Palm Harbor has experienced a lighting “miracle,” according to Palm Harbor Fire Rescue Commissioner Norm Atherton.

“I started three and a half years ago trying to convince the county to let the merchants’ association put in new lights,” Atherton said. “And when I get ahold of something, I’m like a bulldog. I hold on till I get it done.”

Atherton’s target? New LED sidewalk and street lighting that would last a long time without costing a fortune up front. Atherton’s solution? Arkon LED.

Arkon completed installation of the Palm Harbor Historical Society’s first round of 50W LED lights atop fluted direct burial poles earlier this month. For less than $3,000 per setup, Arkon secured, delivered and installed the new lights, along with a light diffuser, two-piece base wrap, banner bar and 110-volt plug, on Palm Harbor’s Florida Avenue.

“The Historical Society was really prepared—they had a good idea of what they wanted and made sure there was power close by for each of the fixtures,” Arkon LED Sales Guy Greg Papandrew said. “All we had to do was engineer the right solution and make sure the lights were installed quickly and efficiently.”

The LEDs are expected to save the association at least 70% compared to older technology lighting such as metal halides. Atherton said he’d like to do as many as 40 more lights in the near future and that he appreciated the work Arkon did on the inaugural project.

“Everybody is tickled to death,” Atherton said of the installation. “I have to put [future installations] out to bid, but I would like to do business with Arkon.”

Email Info@ArkonPower.com to learn more about this or any of Arkon’s other projects in Pinellas County or across the state of Florida.