As sales of LED lighting products continue to grow by an estimated 30 percent annually, lighting manufacturers are quickly pairing up in unique licensing agreements. Over the past year, Philips, Eindhoven, Netherlands, has announced five different licensing arrangements with lighting fixture manufacturers that want to use its LED lamp technology.

Announced on Oct. 22, the most recent agreement linked Philips with Acuity Brands Inc., Atlanta, and will give Acuity access to Philips' LED-based patent portfolio. The agreement will apply to worldwide sales of LED-based luminaires developed and marketed by all of the Acuity Brands businesses. Through the agreement, Acuity Brands will be able to incorporate Philips' patented technologies related to the development and digital control of LED systems for general lighting, architectural and theatrical applications.

“Philips has significantly invested in the research and development of solid-state lighting, particularly in the past several years,” said Rudy Provoost, CEO of Philips Lighting, in a press statement. “Our wide-ranging IP portfolio reflects the resulting innovations. At the same time, we're committed to the growth of the industry and have a vested interest in accelerating adoption. We're therefore very pleased to work with Acuity to stimulate the market and support customer choice by offering new LED lighting solutions to the market.”

“Acuity Brands, utilizing its Lithonia Lighting, Holophane, Peerless, Gotham, Mark Architectural Lighting and other brands, has long been a leader in the development and sale of LED and other energy-efficient lighting fixtures and we are pleased to announce today the license agreement with Philips,” said Vernon Nagel, Chairman, president, and CEO of Acuity Brands. “We believe this agreement will enable us to continue our innovation and leadership in providing technologically advanced, sustainable LED lighting and controls solutions to our customers

This license agreement with Acuity follows earlier agreements of Philips with other lighting players, including Zumtobel, Osram, American DJ Group and JB Lighting Lichtanlagen GmbH. In the initial announcement for the licensing agreement in June 2008, Philips Lighting's Provoost said the market for LED luminaires was growing more than 30 percent annually. “Having the technology is just one part of unlocking the potential of LED-based lighting. By licensing our technology we are able to open up the full potential of new LED lighting solutions to companies and consumers, helping the solid-state lighting market to grow,” added Ruud Peters, CEO of Philips Intellectual Property & Standards.