What is so "Unique"

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting, Dec 4, 2007.

  1. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    I really wasn't bashing Unique with the start of this thread. I haven't used any of their products to date, but have seen them, touched them, and taken them apart. They make some very nice product. Am I going to start installing Unique product as part of my mix? Perhaps in a limited basis, where an application would be best suited to one of the 'specialty' products.

    The main reason I will probably not become a large consumer of Unique product is convenience. I am a small operation and VERY busy. To adopt Unique's products into my systems will require the use of a different distributor. (I purchase 90% of my outdoor lighting product from one source). That means separate accounts, separate purchase orders, different (and more costly) shipping arrangements, more receiving and inventory effort, separate payables, another sales relationship, etc. etc. This just isn't efficient for me... and lets face it, the top manufactures all make excellent bullet uplights, floods, path lights, etc etc. So, why go to all the hassle to replace or augment my fixture line up when what I have found, and am using, works really well.
     
  2. JoeyD

    JoeyD LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,933

    Well all I can say is 10 years ago we were the only company with a multi tap that went to 22v. Now look around and see all the manufacturers who now have them, on top of that look and see how many manufacturers have created brass or bronze fixtures. We werent the first but we were the first to really push them and make them our primary line. We once were the outcasts of the industry now we for the most part are completely accepted and respected.

    Nightscaping and FX still hold the same feelings in regards to UL 1838 as they did in the 80's and 90's. And as far as I know they hold the same feelings towards Unique. I have no problem with that. We credit a lot of our success to them being so stubborn. If they would have believed Nate's theory back then and created their own line of multi tap units to 22v or atleast beyond 15v they probably could have forced him out of buisness. Instead they allowed us a niche, and now the industry has found value in what we have brought to the table.

    Now we are a powerhouse and have capatilized and gained a huge chunk of market share that we once did not have. I have said it before and I will say it again, there is plenty of buisness out there for all manufacturers. On top of that one customer may like my products while one my hate them. I am fine with that and it is part of buisness. My job is to make sure I feed accurate and beneficial information and products to you guys and maybe you will dig it and give us a try.

    Unique is "unique", we have always thought outside of the box. We choose to take the hard path and do things that some might consider crazy, too expensive, dangerous, un neccesary, and so on and so forth. Today a customer of ours made a comment to Nate and I in a meeting. They said "Unique is not a fixture manufacturer, you guys are a system manufacturer." That stuck with me. He was right, we do not make 500 different lights and we dont do a ton of custom stuff. We accomodate a customers ideas and needs when we can but for the most part we are a TF manufacturer who offers fixtures and a system that will ensure proper voltage, and longevity. People that abide by our rules do and will succeed.

    Well here I went again rambling on. I could defend our way of thinking for days and I apologize to those who hate me for it and to those who love me for it and hate reading long posts.

    Gregg, fyi...you can order our brass products in Natural Brass it has always been an option, most just dont like shiney lights in the yard.

    Joey D.
     
  3. JoeyD

    JoeyD LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,933

    Thanks James.

    Let me know who this distributor is and maybe we can open them up?? PM me if you like.

    Joey D.
     
  4. pete scalia

    pete scalia LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 960

    Joey as you know in sales some are just not worth selling to. Putting yourself through all this nonsense will clearly not be worth $2,000 worth of downlight sales per year. That $2,000 worth of material will then be returned sometime throughout the yr for one nonsense reason or another. Trust me don't bother barking up that tree and steer clear of unqualified tire kickers.
     
  5. irrig8r

    irrig8r LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,535

    So Pete, please explain.... are you saying that a successful business shouldn't look for additional markets? What kind of "nonsense" is involved in talking to a potential distributor?

    Canada could become a booming market, especially with the dollar worth less there now.
     
  6. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    Here is a HOT TIP for anyone looking to get into a new market... Check out Calgary Alberta. As far as I know there are no stand alone lighting companies there.... and as far as booming...well, I'm sure you are all aware that Canada is the #1 exporter of oil to the USA...Calgary is exploding with investment and wealth.
     
  7. irrig8r

    irrig8r LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,535

    Oh I have! It's not powder coating that I'm talking about, but that "antiqued" metal look.

    Joey, is it like some kind of hard anodizing? Heat or chemical treatments? Do you do that part here or overseas (cuz if you do it here it would be cool to watch)? Or is it truly bronze and not brass?

    I guess I haven't seen how it ages, and wonder what it will look like in five or 10 years. Whereas I know what unfinished natural brass will look like, dull with maybe a touch of green.
     
  8. pete scalia

    pete scalia LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 960

    The nonsense is dealing with a non buyer who will waste your time and sap you of your energy.
     
  9. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    I have not been impressed with either thats for sure. I used an SPJ downlight in a pinch and here I am 15mo later replacing it with a cast tree light or a quasar 1.

    The leads on the SPJ are about as bad as they come.
     
  10. pete scalia

    pete scalia LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 960

    what's up with the leads?
     

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