Acuity Brands Inc   (AYI)
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Acuity Brands Inc

Business Description

Acuity Brands, Inc. is the parent company of Acuity Brands Lighting, Inc. (“ABL”) and other subsidiaries (Acuity Brands, ABL, and such other subsidiaries are collectively referred to herein as the "Company”), and was incorporated in 2001 under the laws of the State of Delaware. The Company is one of the world’s leading providers of lighting and building management solutions for commercial, institutional, industrial, infrastructure, and residential applications throughout North America and select international markets. The Company’s lighting and building management solutions vary from individual devices to intelligent network systems. Individual devices include luminaires, lighting controls, lighting components, controllers for various building systems (including HVAC, lighting, shades and access control), power supplies, and prismatic skylights. Among other benefits, intelligent network systems can optimize energy efficiency and comfort as well as enhance the occupant experience for various indoor and outdoor applications, all the while reducing operating costs. Additionally, the Company continues to expand its solutions portfolio, including software and services, to provide a host of other economic benefits resulting from data analytics that enables the “Internet of Things” ("IoT") and supports the advancement of smart buildings, smart cities, and the smart grid.

As a results-driven, customer-centric company, management continues to align the unique capabilities and resources of the organization to drive profitable growth by providing comprehensive, differentiated, and integrated lighting and building management solutions for customers, driving world-class cost efficiency, and leveraging a culture of operational excellence through continuous improvement.

Lighting and building management solutions vary significantly in terms of functionality and performance and are selected based on a customer's specification, including the aesthetic desires and performance requirements for a given application. The Company’s lighting and building management solutions are marketed under numerous brand names, including but not limited to Lithonia Lighting®, Holophane®, Peerless®, Gotham®, Mark Architectural Lighting™, Winona® Lighting, Juno®, Indy™, AccuLite®, Aculux™, Healthcare Lighting®, Hydrel®, American Electric Lighting®, Carandini®, Antique Street Lamps™, Sunoptics®, RELOC® Wiring Solutions, eldoLED®, Distech Controls®, and Acuity Controls™.

Principal customers include electrical distributors, system integrators, retail home improvement centers, electric utilities, lighting showrooms, national accounts, and energy service companies located in North America and select international markets serving new construction, renovation, and maintenance and repair applications. In North America, the Company’s lighting and building management solutions are sold primarily by independent sales agents, electrical distributors, system integrators, and sales representatives who cover specific geographic areas and market channels. Products are delivered directly or through a network of distribution centers, regional warehouses, and commercial warehouses using both common carriers and a company-managed truck fleet. To serve international customers, the sales forces utilize a variety of distribution methods to meet specific individual customer or country requirements. The Company has one reportable segment serving the North American and select international lighting and building management markets.

The Company operates in a highly competitive industry that is affected by volatility from a number of general business and economic factors, such as gross domestic product growth, employment levels, credit availability, energy costs, and commodity costs. The Company’s market is based on residential and non-residential construction, both new and renovation and retrofit activity, which is sensitive to the volatility of these general economic factors. The Company is not aware of any data that accurately quantifies the split of the non-residential lighting market between new construction and renovation and retrofit activity; however, recent trends developed from industry sources and Company estimates suggest that renovation and retrofit activity represents a growing proportion of the total non-residential lighting market. Construction spending on infrastructure projects such as highways, streets, and urban developments has a material impact on the demand for the Company’s infrastructure-focused lighting and building management solutions. Demand for the Company’s lighting and building management solutions sold through certain retail channels is highly dependent on economic drivers, such as consumer spending and discretionary income, along with housing construction and home improvement spending.

The residential and non-residential market is influenced by: the development of new lighting technologies, including solid-state lighting, electronic drivers, embedded lighting controls, and more effective optical designs and lamps; federal, state, and local requirements for updated energy codes; incentives by federal, state, and local municipal authorities, as well as utility companies, for using more energy-efficient lighting and building management solutions; and design technologies addressing sustainability and facilitating smarter buildings and cities. The Company is a leading provider of integrated lighting and building management solutions based on these technologies and utilizes internally developed, licensed, or acquired intellectual property. Solid-state lighting and digital building management systems provide the opportunity for lighting and building management systems to be integrated in a manner resulting in the optimal platform for enabling the IoT that collect and exchange data to increase efficiency as well as provide a host of other economic benefits resulting from data analytics and other features. The industry’s addressable market is likely to meaningfully expand due to the benefits and value creation provided by intelligent networked lighting and building management systems. New entrants, including both well-established as well as new software and technology companies, therefore continue to develop capabilities and solutions that are both complementary as well as competitive to those of traditional industry participants.

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