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Light as a service


In conversation with Florian Reithmeier, Executive Vice President of Zumtobel Group Services. In May 2017 the Zumtobel Group introduced a new brand to the lighting market: Zumtobel Group Services (ZGS). As the name suggests, ZGS offers one of the most comprehensive ranges of services in the lighting sector. We spoke with Florian Reithmeier, Executive Vice President of Zumtobel Group Services, about the role and objectives of this new organisation and asked specifically how ZGS is unlocking the potential of lighting solutions in the office sector.

Mr Reithmeier, the scope of Zumtobel Group Services extends far beyond conventional lighting solutions. What exactly is the concept behind the ZGS brand?

The advent of LED technology has revolutionised the lighting industry. We can now take advantage of unprecedented levels of intelligence and flexibility to help light meet defined needs. However, these changes have also made lighting installations even more complex. Clients increasingly want a centre of expertise to assist them with their projects - which is exactly where Zumtobel Group Services (ZGS) comes in. We bring together all the different services from the Zumtobel Group under one roof. It is our aim to be a full-service supplier, providing expert knowledge and support - from the initial concept through to installation, maintenance and beyond. Customers can access everything quickly and easily from one single source. All the Zumtobel Group brands now incorporate ZGS services into their offer and talk to clients about the benefits of services like lighting contracting, turnkey project management and maintenance contracts for lighting controls and emergency lighting systems.

Can you give us a full list of the services offered by ZGS?

As I mentioned earlier, we want to free clients from the burden of complexity associated with modern lighting installations by offering turnkey project management. ZGS looks after project specification and planning (including all the project and property documentation required by law) and manages the supply of luminaires and control modules, while also organising the removal of old systems and the installation of the new lighting solution. Our range of services even covers invitations to tender and the management of external service providers. In order to provide specialist planners and developers who can guarantee the best possible support, ZGS clients can additionally take advantage of turnkey project management with integrated maintenance and servicing contracts. Our technical experts help clients all over the world with their lighting needs and always ensure full compliance with relevant standards and official requirements – covering everything from commissioning and training to complete life-cycle management. The comprehensive ZGS portfolio also features an exciting optional extra: Clients can now choose to finance their full-service offer over several years in the form of a service contract. Our range of data-based services in the Internet of Things is another highlight, enabling us to give clients new insights into the processes and management of buildings and paving the way for pioneering initiatives in the sphere of connected buildings, shops and cities.


What role do digitisation and the Internet of Things play in your range of services? How can ZGS support clients in this area, especially in the office sector?

We believe that the Internet of Things will really come into its own in the sphere of lighting. Wherever there are people, there is artificial light. And where there is artificial light, there has to be a power supply and often also a data network that is already being used for lighting management. This network can easily be extended to cover additional functions. Ultimately, the purpose of the Internet of Things is to record and collect data for evaluation at a central point, creating fantastic new benefits for the client. That is our service offer. This shift opens up completely new opportunities in office buildings. Using the sensors integrated into luminaires, we can obtain vast quantities of information and translate this into clear and relevant knowledge for the client via cloud-based data visualisation. This helps building operators to fully understand how areas are being used. For example, are flexible workstation concepts really a success? Is the use of space being truly maximised? Are there enough meeting rooms? The ultimate aim is sustainability. Optimising the use of space can not only save energy but also costs, especially when it comes to extensions and modifications. One other data-based service offered to clients is remote monitoring. This enables building managers to actively monitor the entire system and easily access information about the energy consumption of the lighting system or the actual operating hours of individual luminaires.


What are your own thoughts about the launch of ZGS?

As part of the Zumtobel Group, ZGS means that we are fully prepared for the future – a future in which the Internet of Things will be everywhere and services will take on increasing importance. The last months have been just the start of an exciting journey. I am really looking forward to working with our team to offer clients the best possible service and genuine added value.