Genlyte Group has emerged as a lighting giant that has placed more emphasis on the commercial market as the residential property sector has slowed, according to the Legal Redux; the company's lighting fixtures and controls illuminate everything from department stores and office buildings to factories and even stadiums.

"We're primarily a commercial lighting company, and right now the commercial market is relatively strong. We're certainly having a good year, and most people think 2007 and 2008 should remain good," said CEO Larry Powers states. In addition to winning several new commercial project contracts in the past year, Genlyte has acquired two firms—JJI Lighting in May 2006 and Strand Lighting in July 2006—that have accounted for 50 percent of its sales growth.

At the same time, company officials are focused on delivering energy-efficient products, as the National Electrical Manufacturers Association reports that lighting typically makes up about 25 percent of U.S. electric bills. To this end, Powers is now working with several LED companies to introduce new LED fixtures at an upcoming trade show in Manhattan. But he concedes that prices must come down before such technology can be fully embraced by facility owners and managers.        EC