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Southwire Acquires Topaz Lighting

Supporting the company’s growth strategy and building toward its goal to remain a generationally sustainable, diversified electrical company, Southwire is pleased to announce the acquisition of Topaz Lighting Corp. of Medford, New York. Serving the construction, industrial and OEM markets for more than 35 years, Topaz is a leading provider of quality electrical fittings, components and lighting products.

Through this acquisition, Southwire will welcome employees from Topaz and will integrate their distribution network to enhance Southwire’s distribution footprint. Topaz’s existing product line will also be combined with Southwire’s rapidly expanding components solutions and lighting platforms.

“We’re very excited about the addition of Topaz and are pleased to welcome their employees to the Southwire team, specifically to our tools, components and assembled solutions business,” said Rich Stinson, Southwire’s president and CEO. “We want to provide our customers with solutions for every phase of the job. The acquisition of Topaz helps us further bolster our components offering and expand our portfolio of lighting products and solutions.”

Southwire will now be able to leverage Topaz’s robust product offering of electrical components, commercial/industrial LED indoor & outdoor luminaires, LED lamps and traditional lighting to further enhance their ever-growing product line of electrical solutions focused on the professional.

“Our acquisition strategy puts our channel partners and end users at the center of our focus,” stated Brandon Moss, Southwire’s president of tools, components and assembled solutions. “By being the one source for tools, components, and lighting, our partners and customers will be able to enjoy numerous advantages through our expanded product portfolio.”

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Newell Brands Sells Connected Home and Security Business Unit

Newell Brands sold the Connected Home and Security (CH&S) Business Unit, including the First Alert®, Onelink® and BRK® brands, to Resideo Technologies Inc. Resideo is a leading global manufacturer and distributor of technology-driven products and solutions that provide comfort, security, energy efficiency and control to customers worldwide. With a presence in more than 150 million homes, Resideo is a great match for the business. The synergies between the CH&S brands and Resideo will provide strategic value for both groups and unlock growth potential.

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NSI Industries Acquires Metallics

NSI Industries LLC has acquired Metallics, a Bristol, Connecticut–based manufacturer and supplier of fasteners and related supplies, as part of its commitment to connecting distributors to the products, services and technologies they need to advance. The acquisition also allows NSI to further key inroads into the electrical, HVAC and building technologies markets.

In service of their customers and in coordination with its affiliate, Avanti Screw Inc., Metallics is able to design and produce new and innovative fasteners in its central Connecticut plant. Their knowledgeable sales and support staff is always available to answer any and all questions. And now, further supported by NSI, customers can continue to feel certain that a strong relationship will be built not only with them, but with their customers and the installers they serve, as well.

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Brian DiBella

Ravi Ramanathan

Legrand NCA Announces Changes to Executive Leadership Team

Legrand North and Central America recently announced two leadership changes. Brian DiBella, president of electrical wiring systems (EWS) has assumed the role of president of data power and control, while Ravi Ramanathan has been promoted to the leadership team to replace DiBella as president of EWS.

DiBella has been a valued member of the Legrand North America team for nearly two decades. He began his career with Legrand as the chief information officer in 2004 before moving into the role of vice president/general manager of Wiremold in 2007. Since 2014 he has been the president for EWS, Legrand’s largest division. He is known throughout the organization as a team builder and collaborative leader.

“It’s been an honor working for Legrand over the past eighteen years and being a part of the growth and evolution of the company” stated DiBella. “I look forward to working with my colleagues in the data power and control division and being a part of this fast-growing business. While I will miss my team at EWS, I trust that Ravi will do a great job in leading them towards growth and continued success.”

Ramanathan has worked with DiBella since 2014, when he joined as the vice president and general manager of the wire and cable management business for EWS. In 2019, Ramanathan led and integrated Starline, which Legrand acquired in that same year. His aptitude for leadership was evident through his time with Starline, almost doubling its revenue over the last two years.

“There is no denying the invaluable lessons I have learned by working with Brian for the last seven years,” said Ramanathan. “Legrand’s innovative mindset and commitment to our customers are values that each of our team members live by. I’m excited to lead this talented team to further success and join the esteemed Legrand leadership team. I’m grateful to continue to be a part of the company’s growth.”

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Daryoush Larizadeh

Leviton Appoints New CEO

Leviton recently appointed Daryoush Larizadeh as CEO. Larizadeh will continue his responsibilities as president and chief operating officer (COO) in addition to assuming the CEO role.

Larizadeh has been president and COO of Leviton for the past six years, overseeing Leviton’s continued growth and building on the company’s successful history and culture of innovation.

Larizadeh becomes only the fourth CEO since the company’s founding 115 years ago. “I am honored and humbled to take on the role of CEO at a company that’s been built on a long and successful history of innovation,” Larizadeh said.

He will assume the role from Don Hendler who will assume the role of chairman of the board. Stephen Sokolow, who last held this position, will become chairman of the board emeritus while remaining an executive vice president of the corporation.

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Shannon McDaniel

Panduit Names New CEO and CCO

Panduit has appointed Shannon McDaniel as its next CEO and President. McDaniel, who currently serves as the company’s chief financial officer, will succeed current CEO and President Dennis Renaud, who retired at the end of 2021.

“As a results-focused leader, Shannon brings his collaborative mindset to the role, drawing from his commercial and financial background, while leveraging the power of Panduit to move the company forward,” said Panduit Executive Chair Andrew Caveney. “Shannon has also built the trust of our employees, and the board is confident that he will apply his deep industry knowledge and keen business acumen to lead Panduit.”

Prior to joining Panduit as CFO, he excelled in global financial leadership roles during his 14 years with Eaton Corporation, including serving as the company’s director of finance for its EMEA electrical business and vice president of finance for the Americas systems and services group. McDaniel holds a bachelor of science in accounting from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Ill.

Marc Naese

Panduit Corp. also announced the promotion of Marc Naese to chief commercial officer. A long-time company executive, Naese most recently served as senior vice president of the company’s Network Infrastructure business unit. In this newly created position, he will report directly to Panduit President and CEO Shannon McDaniel.

In this new role, Naese will lead global go-to-market strategy including sales and product development. He also will focus on ensuring that Panduit continues to deliver a best-in-class experience for employees, partners and customers.

“I am excited by this opportunity and look forward to continued collaboration across the business to bring to market the solutions and products that enable our customers and partners to achieve their business goals,” said Naese.

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Current Announces Post-Merger Executive Leadership, Reopens NC Institute

Current, the new company formed through the merger of GE Current, a Daintree company, and Hubbell® Incorporated’s commercial and industrial (C&I) lighting business, announced its new executive team for the combined company located across its offices in Greenville, South Carolina, and Cleveland, Ohio.

Chip Taylor, with an established track record in the lighting industry, has been appointed the chief commercial officer.

The business units at the core of the company will be led by:

  • Tom Benton as VP & GM of Fixtures, including the recently acquired Forum business
  • Jason Sherrill as VP & GM of Controls and Software, including the NX and Daintree platforms
  • Dan Phalen as VP & GM of Growth Markets, including Lamps, Roadways, Signage and Horticulture

Joe Cenin will expand his role as chief supply chain officer to now include the acquired facilities in Juarez, Mexico; Tijuana, Mexico; Christiansburg, Virginia; and Plympton, Massachusetts.

James “Jim” Farrell, previously president of Hubbell Lighting, recently rejoined the company as the group chief financial officer of the combined enterprise. Courtney Abraham will lead the development of people resources as the chief human resources officer.

Tom Boyle will take on the newly created role of chief development officer leading the company development and integration efforts. Mark Ward has been appointed as vice president of business transformation entrusted with performance excellence across the enterprise. Mark LeClair will lead the digital-connect efforts as the chief information officer and Inger Eckert will be the general counsel of the business.

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ABB Installation Products Names SVP of Sales for U.S.

Deni Miller

Deni Miller has been named senior vice president, installation product sales, electrification U.S.

Miller will lead the installation products sales organization as it continues to focus on driving digitization and customer relations, along with distribution strategies. In addition to installation products sales, she will be responsible for the retail sales business, including the smart buildings sales team within electrification.

Most recently, Miller served as senior vice president, marketing and sales: electrical distribution and as the U.S. leader of ABB’s Encompass Women employee resource group (ERG). Miller and ABB were recently recognized for her work in driving equality at ABB by Catalyst, an advocacy group focusing on gender equity in the workplace.

Miller joined ABB as part of the GE Industrial Systems acquisition in 2018. She held various roles over the past 17 years within GE’s critical power, instrument transformer and electrical distribution businesses, including as the CIO sales leader for the west region.

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Warren Jenkins

Warren Jenkins Named VP, C&I Sales, Hubbell Electrical Solutions

Warren Jenkins has been named vice president of sales for Hubbell Electrical Solutions (HES) C&I Sales. In this role, he will lead a unified sales team in serving customers. He is responsible for driving growth and sales optimization through training, process efficiencies and customer continuity. The existing sales leadership team (Mike Sullivan, Nick Moraitis, Gregg Ewing and Al Ruffner) will continue to offer uncompromising support; this change doesn’t affect any daily operations, sales contacts or commitments in service.

HES was recently reorganized into four strategic business units to align with customers: Electrical Products led by Peter Fehl, Light Industrial led by Kevin Ryan, Harsh & Heavy Industrial led by Christoph Vogel and Retail & Builder led by Chris Hogan.

Beginning in January, Jenkins assumed sales responsibility for Electrical Products (Bell, Bryant, Hubbell Wiring Device, Premise Raco, TayMac and Wiegmann), Light Industrial (Burndy, CPI, CMC and Killark) and Harsh & Heavy Industrial (Acme, Gai-Tronics and Hawke-US,).

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IPEX USA Names Northeast Regional Manager

Brian Peters

IPEX USA has named Brian Peters to the northeast regional manager role within the USA Electrical Team, responsible for managing the IPEX existing customer base, representative’s network as well as specification work with engineers and electrical contractors.

Peters comes to the USA Electrical Team with more than 12 years of experience in the U.S. electrical market, working as a regional manager and strategic partnerships manager for the National Association of Electrical Distributors. He looks forward to further cultivating and engaging the representative network and serving the electrical distribution partnerships in a trusted advisor-type role.

“Brian’s exceptional past industry experience coupled with his self-drive, ambition and passion to the industry, will make him a valuable member of our electrical team. He will play a huge role in increasing our market penetration and better serving our valued customers in this important region,” said John Gaither, general sales manager, electrical products.

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Tyler Knopp

Electri-Flex Announces New Regional Sales Manager

Electri-Flex Co. has hired Tyler Knopp for the role of regional sales manager for the U.S Central Region

Based in Dubuque, Iowa, Knopp comes to Electri-Flex with more than six years of sales and management experience for a national electrical distributor. He has achieved a variety of industry accomplishments, including being named a 2018 tED Magazine “30 under 35” award winner, graduating from the NAED Leadership Development Program in 2020, and is a current member of the NAED LEAD Committee.

“Tyler’s distribution experience will be a great addition to our team, and he will help continue Electri-Flex’s pursuit of our industry-leading service,” said Brock Klein, national sales manager. “Tyler has spent his electrical career finding ways to grow both his business and leadership skills, and we look forward to him continuing those efforts at Electri-Flex.”

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DDI System Announces New Director of Business Development

David Greene

DDI System, a provider of ERP & e-commerce software for wholesale distributors, recently announced David Greene has stepped into a new role with the company as director of business development.

Greene, founder and former partner of a market-specific ERP for foodservice equipment and supply dealers, joined DDI System as a dedicated foodservice market specialist in January 2020. He is now responsible for growing DDI System’s business in all markets, finding new business opportunities and helping to build a strong, recognizable brand alongside the marketing and sales teams.

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NEMRA Announces New Appointments

The National Electrical Manufacturers Representatives Association (NEMRA) announced the appointment of one officer to its Board of Directors and one executive committee member to the NEMRA Manufacturers Group (NMG).

Jeff Casey

Jeff Casey, CPMR, Casey Sales Electric Inc., will join NEMRA’s Board of Directors. "I am very pleased to welcome Jeff to our Board of Directors," said Jim Johnson, president of NEMRA. "Jeff brings a wealth of industry experience and will be a tremendous asset to our board, as we further our mission of promoting and enhancing the value of the independent representative to the electrical industry.”

Christy Tilton

Christy Tilton, vice president of U.S. Professional Trade Sales, Signify, will join the NMG Executive Committee. “Christy has been serving the industry in various sales leadership roles for the past 20 years,” said Johnson. “She will bring a unified, collaborative voice that will further our efforts of improving communications, reducing transaction costs, adding value, and increasing opportunities for professional development.”

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ABB Acquires Controlling Interest in InCharge Energy

ABB has acquired a controlling stake in electric vehicle (EV) commercial charging infrastructure solutions company InCharge Energy. The addition of InCharge Energy will strengthen ABB’s E-mobility Division in the North American market by broadening its customer base and expanding its fleet electrification software and digital services offering.

The transaction is part of ABB E-mobility’s growth strategy and is intended to accelerate the expansion of its portfolio to include turnkey EV infrastructure solutions to private and public commercial fleets, EV manufacturers, ride-share operators, municipalities, and commercial facilities owners.

InCharge Energy tailors end-to-end EV charging infrastructure solutions, from initial consultancy and recommendations on required energy upgrades to the procurement, installation, operation, and maintenance of charging systems. It also provides cloud-based software services for the optimization of energy management, critical for maximizing fleet business

performance. Its innovative service models offer subscription solutions such as software-as-a-service and fully financed charging-as-a-service.

With solutions for a broad range of customers from last-mile delivery to rental fleets, InCharge Energy has several master agreements with major commercial fleet operators in the U.S. Founded in 2018 and based in California, the company has around 50 employees and is active in the U.S. and Canada.

ABB initially acquired a 10% stake through its investment in the Series A venture capital funding round in 2020 and has now increased its interest to approximately 60% of InCharge Energy’s issued share capital. Founders Cameron Funk and Terry O’Day, together with the current management team, will continue to lead the company and retain the remaining stake.

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Current Reopens North Carolina Lighting Institute

Located on the same campus as GE Current’s lighting fixture manufacturing plant in Henderson, North Carolina,

the 8,500-square foot institute has been fully renovated to include a central teaching auditorium, expanded classrooms and a collaboration area for networking. Each interior space is equipped with the latest in audio-visual technology to provide a flexible and immersive live training experience, as well as enhanced virtual learning options.

The state-of-the-art learning center will provide a cutting-edge educational and training experience that includes the latest in hands-on teaching tools and a display of installed lighting and controls products.

The facility’s lighting design demonstrates the breadth of Current’s architectural interior lighting brands. The institute training classes will cover the full range of Current’s product portfolios, including indoor, outdoor and roadway lighting and Daintree® Wireless Controls.

A dedicated training staff will focus on providing a comprehensive curriculum that covers relevant and timely product technology, trends, and compliance topics to meet the needs of Current’s customers and channel partners. Courses will offer AIA continuing education credits.

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Leviton Introduces Salesforce Visual Remote Assistant

Leviton announced significant enhancements to its technical support capabilities with the introduction of the Salesforce Visual Remote Assistant. With this state-of-the-art software tool, builders, contractors and homeowners can connect with Leviton technical service representatives via video directly from their mobile device.

With the Salesforce Visual Remote Assistant, Leviton can help customers troubleshoot and resolve issues faster so that they can quickly get back to their jobs. The software allows technicians, installers or homeowners to transmit live video and images of technical issues from the field while consulting with a remote expert. Salesforce Visual Remote Assistant benefits builders and electricians by improving first-time resolution rates, cutting operational costs and reducing training time.

The Salesforce Visual Remote Assistant does not require users to download an app. When visual assistance is needed, customers are sent a text message or email to their smart device containing a secure link that will directly connect them to a member of the Leviton Technical Service team. For privacy and security, the link is a one-time use code which expires following the completion of the support session.

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Curri Now an IMARK Member Service Provider

IMARK Electrical recently announced that Curri is now an IMARK member service provider.

Known as the “Uber for construction material delivery," Curri can be a great option for hotshot and last-mile deliveries to scheduled routes and LTL/FTL deliveries. The company offers live tracking, proof of delivery and upfront pricing. Perfect for emergency deliveries but also for expanding delivery services without adding vehicles or drivers.

Curri’s wide fleet, from cars to semi-trucks, including pick-up trucks, sprinter vans, box trucks, pipe-racks, goosenecks and lift gates, is available nationwide. With affordable options and three priority types (rush, same-day and scheduled deliveries), Curri ensures deliveries meet customer requirements.

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Acuity Expands Partnership with Microsoft, Announces Sustainability Initiative

Acuity Brands Inc. is expanding its collaboration with Microsoft to bring new capabilities to Acuity Brands smart lighting, lighting controls and building automation solutions.

Acuity Brands has a bold goal to avoid 100m metric tons of carbon emissions as a result of projected 2020-2030 sales of LED luminaires, lighting controls and building management systems replacing older technologies in existing buildings. By combining the power of Microsoft’s Cloud for Sustainability and Microsoft Azure IoT with Acuity Brands customer solutions, Acuity Brands and Microsoft will jointly enable end customers, operating many types of facilities and buildings, to forecast and calculate the environmental and financial impacts that these new lighting and building management technologies deliver.

Acuity Brands and Microsoft will collaborate to bring the Acuity Brands portfolio of applications to Azure, standardizing data ingestion and analysis via Azure Digital Twins and analysis of this data via Azure’s AI offering. Microsoft and Acuity Brands will also look to explore technology solutions that further evolve the way spaces can be evaluated, managed and optimized in the future.

Acuity Brands also announced a new initiative planned to reduce paper use by more than 15 million sheets and save an estimated 1,500 trees per year through its introduction of scannable QR code instructions. The shift to lessen paper usage aligns the Company’s sustainability goals with its digital transformation.

The introduction of digital QR code installation instructions is expected to reduce the Company’s CO2 emissions by approximately 423,000 pounds per year. Acuity plans to make QR code instructions available for several top-selling products in its portfolio starting in May 2022. Customers will receive a QR code with their product instead of paper instructions. When the QR code is scanned, customers will be directed to a web page with installation instructions and product information that can be read online or downloaded.

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Atkore Receives 2022 Top Workplaces USA Award

Atkore has announced it has earned the 2022 Top Workplaces USA award, issued by Energage, a purpose-driven organization that develops solutions to build and brand Top Workplaces. This is the inaugural year for Top Workplaces USA, built on the program’s 14-year history surveying more than 20 million employees across 54 markets for the regional Top Workplaces awards.

Top Workplaces USA offers national recognition for large organizations, those with more than 150 employees, and those that may have operations in multiple markets. Several thousand organizations from across the country were invited, and more than 1,100 participated in the Top Workplaces USA survey. Winners of the Top Workplaces USA list are chosen based solely on employee feedback gathered through an employee engagement survey, issued by Energage. Results are calculated by comparing the survey’s research-based statements, including 15 Culture Drivers that are proven to predict high performance against industry benchmarks.

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2021 IDEAL National Championship Winners Announced

IDEAL® Electrical concluded its fifth annual IDEAL National Championship in Nashville on Dec. 17, 2021, marking the competition’s highly anticipated in-person return. Out of more than 32,000 electricians who competed in qualifying rounds across the United States and 142 final competitors, Anthony Kovalchick from Wilmington, North Carolina was crowned champion, winning the grand prize of $60,000 while Michael Zurenda from Binghamton, New York took the top spot in the student/apprentice competition, winning $40,000.

This year’s National Championship featured an exciting new addition, the Pro-Am team challenge, where one professional and one student/apprentice could compete together. Team “Risky Business,” consisting of team members Will Barnett and Christopher Brieschke from Elgin, Illinois won this year’s Pro-Am challenge and were awarded $40,000 and $5,000 in IDEALCash.

Throughout the 2021 IDEAL National Championship, competitors demonstrated their skills in four rounds of intense challenges, including a commercial pull box prep and install, a commercial panel install, a three-way switch install and an entire panel change-out. Family and friends of the participants filled the arena to watch the adrenaline-pumping events of the week and to cheer on the competitors.

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Greenlee Partners with Knoxville Utilities Board on Study

Greenlee, part of Emerson’s professional tools portfolio, is helping municipal utility workers in Knoxville, Tennessee learn how they can benefit from ergonomic health and safety on the job.

Greenlee spent several days in the field with Knoxville Utilities Board (KUB) employees studying how they use utility tools in natural gas, electric, water and wastewater projects. As part of the research, KUB members had sensors placed on key pressure points on their bodies. This helped to scientifically measure each user’s energy and form output when working with different tools in various application scenarios.

“We’re showing people literally what their body is going through with every lift, turn and bend they do during the workday,” said Ryan Berg, director of product management, Greenlee for Emerson. “You can talk about how a certain tool is designed to deliver less strain on the body, but it’s not until you see the data from the sensors that it makes sense. We can show the energy each person is exerting and talk about how performing a task differently or using another tool or method could prevent harm to the individual.”

This quantitative data is helping the KUB add to its existing ergonomics strategy by showing employees how new tools and work processes have a long-term effect on their bodies.

“In the past, we’ve looked at all the potential for ergonomic improvements, but we’ve not had any measurable data. This is the first time we’ve had real measurable data or have looked into specific tools and tasks to pinpoint our biggest issues and find a feasible solution,” said Hayden Sparks, safety specialist, KUB. “It’s important to understand how our employees use tools and which tools they prefer so that we can give them a better process and better tools to increase their longevity. We want them to take care of themselves in the long run.”

The KUB field study results are an example of how ergonomic considerations can enhance employee health and safety efforts by showing how the impact of tool selection and other practices in the field can make a big impact. These enhancements can help improve productivity, decrease injuries and save money over time.

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OmniCable Receives Belden Value Award

Omni Cable LLC was recently honored as a recipient of a Belden Value Award (Americas). “We are proud to receive this prestigious recognition from Belden, a leader in the industry. Our shared values and commitment to excellence are the foundation of our partnership and what drives our mutual success,” said Greg Lampert, OmniCable’s president and CEO.

OmniCable, a premier redistributor of Belden, was one of six industry leaders honored. These awards recognize Partner Alliance Distributors that live out at least one of Belden’s six core values. These six values emphasize results and continuous improvement and encourage employees and distribution partners to deliver exceptional experiences to customers.

OmniCable received the We Play to Win Belden Value Award for being accountable for its performance and outperforming the competition.

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Channel Marketing Group Launches US LightingTrends

US LightingTrends is a comprehensive news and information source for the entire spectrum of the U.S. lighting industry—covering the residential, commercial, hospitality, office and industrial markets—with the unique value-add of business insight and analysis provided by industry insiders.

The site,, covers daily news and publishes a twice-monthly newsletter to more than 21,000 lighting designers, contractors, distributors, manufacturer reps/lighting agents and manufacturers.

Focused initially on content, the team plans to add services to bring more resources to those who make lighting decisions.

The team behind US LightingTrends reports from the trenches, listening to the needs and challenges facing specifiers, buyers and distributors of lighting products and sharing those insights in order to help readers improve their business operations and remain profitable especially during challenging times.

US LightingTrends brings together electrical industry veterans who will bring their expertise to support the lighting industry:

  • David Gordon is president of Channel Marketing Group (CMG) and the electrical distributor resource ElectricalTrends, which provides strategic planning, marketing and market research support to manufacturers and distributors in the construction and industrial trades.
  • On the editorial side, Linda Longo has been reporting on the residential, hospitality and architectural lighting communities for nearly 30 years, heading publications such as Home Lighting & Accessories magazine, enLIGHTenment magazine and Contract Lighting magazine.
  • Partnering with the team is the renowned publishing group Kerrwil, a leading provider of digital, online and web-based solutions guided by John Kerr. Kerrwil publishes Lighting Design + Specification, Canadian Electrical Wholesaler and Electrical Industry Canada among other titles and market segments.

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New Website Offers Better Glimpse into DDS’ Advanced Solutions

Distributor Data Solutions (DDS) recently launched a wholly redesigned website. The site’s updated design and messaging clarifies the company’s solution offerings and directs visitors to the most relevant and efficient customer experience according to their needs.

The new site features streamlined customer journeys and valuable new resources for manufacturers and distributors, helping them explore and engage with the company’s sophisticated offerings.

“Our solutions have matured considerably over the past few years, and they tend to be more advanced than what most companies are used to seeing in the marketplace,” said DDS President Matt Christensen. “We recognized an opportunity to improve how we explain and demonstrate the value and business impact of our services on our website, where visitors are increasingly coming in search of better ways to deliver and manage their product content for the best possible end-user experience.”

The company has rapidly expanded its footprint in multiple distribution verticals over the past two years, building on solid traction gained in the electrical distribution industry. DDS now serves more than a dozen complementary wholesale industries, with several others in early stages of development. Their new site has dedicated landing pages for six of the sectors where their product content offering

and customer footprint are most advanced: Electrical, Plumbing, HVAC, Industrial Supply, Industrial Gas and Welding and Industrial Automation.

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Klein Tools Partners with Home Builders Institute, Trade Hounds

Klein Tools announced a new partnership with the Home Builders Institute (HBI). Through this partnership, Klein Tools will serve as the title electrical sponsor of the HBI’s 55 electrical programs nationwide, which prepare students with the skills, knowledge and placement services they need for careers in the skilled trades, particularly in the electrical field.

“For decades, Klein Tools has been in the pursuit of closing the skills gap that exists in the skilled trades professions,” said Mark Klein, co-president of Klein Tools. “We have long admired the work that HBI does to address these issues, and we believe that together we can further expand our reach and work toward ultimately eliminating the skills gap.”

Beyond HBI’s nationwide electrical programs, Klein Tools will also complement the company’s programs that offer participants industry-based training, pre-apprenticeship training, portable industry-recognized credentials and job placement.

Klein Tools understands the specific impact of the skills gap on the electrical industry. The company’s recently issued “Dark by 2050” original report revealed that in order to meet the needs of our clean energy future, we also need to address the shocking workforce gap immediately. This includes a number of benchmarks that need to be reached including:

  • Adding 251,621 more electricians to the U.S. workforce by 2030
  • Adding 325,000 more electricians to the U.S. workforce by 2040
  • Adding 462,183 more electricians to the U.S. workforce by 2050

In other company news, Klein Tools also announced a partnership with Trade Hounds, America’s leading network for professional construction and skilled tradespeople.

As part of a deeply integrated, first-of-its-kind marketing partnership, Trade Hounds will promote Klein Tools via its app to its membership of more than 250,000 electricians, linemen, ironworkers, carpenters and plumbers. Klein Tools’ verified account on the Trade Hounds platform and presence on the Trade Hounds website will offer users high-value product sweepstakes, giveaways of Klein Tools’ most popular products, social media promotion and more.

The partnership will give Klein Tools direct access to trades people across America, to educate around tools and best practices as well as the opportunity to sell and foster trial of its wide assortment of tools to an ever-expanding base of potential users. Additionally, this joint venture will be focused on enabling and enriching the range of skills on the Trade Hounds platform, from an Apprentice to a Master.

Klein Tools will also work to promote its Trade Hounds account through its existing social media channels. Klein will also make its offers and content visible through the existing Klein Tools Tradesmen Club, which will ultimately expand the visibility of Trade Hounds.

The Trade Hounds community application is a blend of traditional and non-traditional community features that empower workers across numerous skilled trades including carpenters, plumbers, electricians, welders, HVAC, and much more. It connects tradespeople with each other to showcase their work, communicate with fellow tradespeople about their lives and profession, learn about potential job opportunities and best practices.

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