Striking lighting solutions provided by Zumtobel for a car showroom.

Leading international lighting solutions supplier Zumtobel Staff elaborates on the importance of professional lighting solutions in enhancing the value, efficiency and aesthetic appeal of a commercial property.

THE soft values created by enhancing the characteristics of a commercial property are becoming increasingly significant when assessing the value of the development.

Environments that set themselves apart through their efficient and attractive use of space stimulate customers and tenants alike. One important and often critical design element for buildings and areas with character is the use of professional lighting solutions, which meet the latest international standards and which are customised to suit the specific situation.

Today, the successful marketing of corporate architecture and its power to reinforce a brand depends on the extent to which the corporate identity is actually perceived by buyers, tenants, employees and customers.

This holds true as much for industrial production facilities as it does for shopping malls, office blocks and healthcare facilities. Used to set a building apart, lighting design is both a marketing instrument and a project branding tool.

It is no mere coincidence that architects, interior designers and lighting consultants are finding that both property developers and facility managers welcome the use of lighting concepts that enhance the spaciousness and visual differentiation of the development.

Set against the overall project costs, professional lighting costs are barely significant but pay dividends, notably through substantial benefits in terms of property quality, operational efficiency and the productivity of the people who use or work in the building.

Leveraging returns

Lighting determines the night-time image of a building, guides people into and through a building, is a fundamental prerequisite for safe working and high performance, puts products on centre stage and enhances experiences.

In ambitious projects, it is innovative lighting concepts that form a key success factor, adding new dimensions to the structure to generate soft values through the use of sophisticated design and technology.

Modern electronic facility management lays the foundations for the effective interplay of efficiency, functionality, ergonomics and aesthetics. But it is not only in intelligent commercial properties - where use, operation and maintenance are controlled by digitally networked facility management - that integral lighting management systems have a part to play.

Austria-headquartered Zumtobel Staff offers Luxmate lighting management systems which can also be used as stand-alone solutions or in conjunction with daylight-deflecting blind systems.

Interactive lighting control systems have a spectrum of applications, facilitating customisation and adaptation of the lighting to current needs while also providing an ideal cost-benefit ratio.

The ongoing development of lighting management systems is directly linked to progress on the digital IT technology front. Today, local bus-based networking is complemented by remote monitoring via intranet-based facility management systems. Moreover, electronically-controlled lighting systems can provide an economical means of increasing flexibility in changing the usage of space, as is frequently required in commercial property. To fully exploit the advantages of professional lighting solutions, this aspect of facility planning must be integrated into the overall concept as early on as possible.

Lighting solutions are no longer an add-on aspect that comes up for consideration when the interior fittings are already in the process of being installed. Given the intricate links between the marketability, utility value and image of a building, the design of the specific lighting solutions needs to be tackled no later than the concept stage.

Single source

The competence of the lighting systems supplier as a partner to investors, developers, operators, architects and lighting consultants forges the decisive competitive edge of the property. Realising this at an early stage - almost 20 years ago - Zumtobel Staff made the transition from lighting supplier to full-service provider of professional, project-oriented lighting solutions. The company is well aware that it is from the coherent provision of support throughout the consultancy, sales, implementation and after-sales sectors that orders result.

As property markets have become increasingly global, Zumtobel Staff has had to keep pace with positioning itself internationally. Today, its state-of-the-art lighting technology and exceptional innovative capabilities are complemented by an international network of planning, consulting and service expertise.

Globally-active developers, operators and planners of commercial property need lighting solutions from a single source - solutions that set global benchmarks. Product quality, excellent lighting technology, easy installation and safe and reliable operation must go hand in hand.

What is called for is a true all-rounder who can supply professional lighting systems for every application - in an office complex, that can mean from the foyer to the executive suite, from open-plan offices to conference rooms and from the underground car-park to the canteen. In a high-tech production facility, it implies anything from cleanroom zones to research and from development labs to warehousing and despatch areas. At a mega-mall, it covers the parking areas, arcades and courtyards, individual shops and restaurants, as well as the service and building maintenance areas.

As a leading international supplier of innovative lighting solutions, Zumtobel Staff can draw on an extensive customer-oriented network of expertise, providing centralised consultancy services and local support.

The company's international success and steady growth are the results of tried and tested partnerships with leading corporate players, benchmark architects and prominent lighting consultants. Its aim has long been to guarantee customised lighting solutions drawn from a broad-based product portfolio and, wherever necessary, to also develop special-purpose luminaires which will also generate spin-off innovations for its standard lighting systems.

Quite a few of the company's most successful model ranges were originally developed for specific projects. Thus, professional lighting solutions act as a twofold success factor to ensure the future of projects: firstly they make the ideal investment levers, boosting soft values to generate a lasting increase in the utility value and perceived value of a property, and secondly they act as a prime mover in the technical design of artificial light.