Press Kit

Background

Firefly LED Lighting, headquartered in Austin, Texas, provides a full range of patented “Smart LED” light bulbs for direct replacement of incandescent and fluorescent bulbs in homes, commercial buildings, municipal offices, universities, residential properties, and other facilities. Firefly LED lights consume low energy, produce little heat, and are long lasting, allowing customers to reduce energy costs by up to 90 percent and minimize replacement costs. Made in the USA, Firefly LED lamps are the brightest, most energy-efficient LED lights on the market.

Firefly LED is the technology leader in the LED lighting space. With LED lighting becoming the most impactful technology in lighting since Thomas Edison first invented the light bulb, Firefly LED Lighting set out to develop the most reliable and the most efficient LED lighting products on the market. This process created the Starfly and Sunfly lighting products which are class leaders in reliability, efficiency, and light output. The Starfly product line is 22 percent to 81 percent more reliable than the big-name brands. The Sunfly product line offers the only fully dimmable, fully equivalent 75 to 125 W replacement lamps on the market. These products are like buying a car that gets 232 miles per gallon and lasts 3 million miles.

With the rapid adoption of LED lighting across business and residential markets, owners and managers needed a reliable, efficient, and fully adjustable light source. Firefly is the winner in the selection process for light output, light color, and rapid payback. By building its products in the USA, in Austin, Texas, Firefly assures quality and rapid delivery. Firefly also creates jobs. With hundreds of installations, from Austin favorites Kerbey Lane Café and Alamo Drafthouse to large commercial installations, including office buildings across the USA, Firefly is saving clients millions of dollars. By creating advanced technologies that replicate the look and feel of hundred-year-old lighting and taking them to the digital domain, Firefly is clearly at the forefront of LED technology.

We design and manufacture the best in LED lighting, reducing cost of ownership by up to 93 percent.

Firefly saw that LED lighting could meet both reliability and output parameters in the same package. By creating a fully modular LED lamp, we are able to increase output and heat-sink size or reduce heat-sink size in response to rapid LED technology growth. The same innovative modular design allows the lamps to be changed in beam and color with a simple change of the lens. With over 28 patents in process, we have found innovative approaches for every component in LED lighting. From phosphor to driver circuits, Firefly has developed game-changing technology focused on high performance, high efficiency, and reliability.

Firefly LEDs are designed for high-speed manufacture while most other LED products are hand built in China. Firefly combined new ideas with ideas from the semiconductor industry, electronics industry, and automotive industry to create a process that will use automation to build these lamps efficiently, effectively, and rapidly in the USA. Instead of subtractive machining or expensive casting, Firefly uses a patent-pending layer-cake heat-sink design. This creates the best possible thermal performance with minimal machining and the lowest possible environmental impact. This design also dramatically lowers the cost of goods while increasing quality and product lifetime.

 

Business Facts

Firefly LED Lighting is spearheaded by Steve Barcik, Brad Bailey, Hoobie Daniel and Tom Mollenkamp, all of whom have backgrounds and extensive experience in high tech engineering, consumer products, consumer electronics, optics technology, and industrial design. Together, they established a company based on the three core principles of integrity, respect and entrepreneurship.

Through interaction, mentoring, coaching, and teaching, Firefly team members work with entrepreneurs, college students, high school students, and even middle school students to inspire engineering talent, creativity, and the entrepreneurial spirit.

Firefly has developed 28 patent applications and is a revenue-generating company.  The company continues to discover innovative ways for consumers to save energy and money, lessen carbon footprint and uplift the quality of every LED light bulb.

 

Our Team

Steve Barcik Amstel, CEO and Founder, is an entrepreneur and engineer with over 30 years experience in high-technology companies and engineering. Steve has started six companies and successfully exited two of those companies, with four still in existence today. His experience in facilities and energy conservation with Texas Instruments, combined with a design background in capital equipment and consumer products, led Steve to found Firefly LED Lighting, Inc. Firefly is a Texas-based and Texas-manufactured LED lighting company. With Firefly LED Lighting, Steve and other team members provide energy-saving lighting products. The Firefly lighting line includes replacement bulbs, fixtures and solutions. Steve has won prestigious awards for positive action for the environment, including the World Wildlife Fund Award for Environmental Excellence and the Governor’s Award for Environmental Stewardship. Steve received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia, and is president of the Central Texas alumni chapter. Steve was chairman of the Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International Environmental Health and Safety Committee for ten years, as part of worldwide technology standards for environment, safety and health. Steve and his wife, Brandy Rainey Amstel, reside in Austin, Texas, where they both enjoy pugs, live music, filmmaking, and boating.

Brad Bailey, Chief Technical Officer, has over 18 years industry experience focused on technology development for microelectronics fabrication, electromechanical systems development, electro-optics applications, and technical management within established companies, as well as technology start-ups. His core competency centers on technology development from concept to prototype to end product by creating novel solutions to complex and highly constrained problems. Brad relies on a diverse knowledge base to develop innovative outcomes to complex, multidisciplinary projects. He has a proven track record of securing intellectual property to protect technical and business development investments and is an inventor on over 25 patent applications. He is a critical component of strategic business execution and planning, ensuring that the technology development cycle timelines and costs remain aligned to business and market requirements. At Firefly, Brad has managed R&D, product development, testing and validation, and UL certification efforts. He has authored over 15 technical publications and holds a B.S. in Physics and M.S. in Materials Science from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Hoobie Daniels, Vice President of Manufacturing & Supply Chain, (B.S. in Industrial Engineering, M.B.A., APICS certified) has extensive manufacturing, operations management, and supply chain experience in the aerospace, consumer products, and lighting industries. His wide experience also includes profit and loss responsibility and customer service/distribution management. He has a history of successful continuous improvement efforts, utilizing Six Sigma and lean manufacturing techniques. Most recently, Hoobie has led the transformation of two lighting-fixture facilities to lean manufacturing processes, achieving significant results in productivity and quality improvement (both internal and field claims), inventory reduction, and improved customer service and lead time.  He has played a major role in new-product launches in all three industries.

Tom Mollenkamp, Vice President of Sales, adds 10+ years of lighting industry sales and distribution experience to Firefly, where he is responsible for the company’s business development and sales activity in both domestic and international markets. Most recently, he spearheaded the global sales initiatives for Encompass Lighting Group, where he built out distribution channels in 15+ countries in Asia, Oceania, Europe, and Latin America and established the Tech Lighting and LBL Lighting brands among the global specification community. Tom has also worked for Color Kinetics, developing and managing international distribution channels in Latin America and Asia. He holds a B.A. from Truman State University, and a master’s degree from the University of Kansas.

 

History

Firefly LED Lighting was founded in June 2009. Within one month of its operation, the company completed its first concept prototypes. In the same year, Firefly is admitted as a member of the prestigious Austin Technology Incubator. In 2010, it received the Grand Prize in the RISE Conference Fast Pitch Contest. The year 2011 was a significant year in terms of production. The company completed its PAR lamp line, garage and parking lot lighting, modular lenses, and dimmable DC driver.

In 2012, Firefly strengthened its marketing campaign and was featured in NBC’s, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.”  Firefly also won the Austin Business Journal Technology Award.

 

Product Overview

Firefly LED’s light bulbs are a step above its competition. Firefly’s unique patent-pending driver technology outperforms all other drivers on the market. With efficiency and total product cost as parameters, Firefly LED developed a multistage, analog, digital, fully dimmable power circuit with efficiencies in the high 90s, beating our competition in some cases by as much as 44 percent This unique driver topology allows dimming from 100 to 1 percent and allows full shutoff with the broadest possible range of dimmers on the market. You might not know that the dimmers in your business and home never fully shut off. Since LEDs are extremely efficient, they can emit light at these very low currents. Firefly products are UL certified and Energy Star compliant. Firefly passed national and international quality assurance standards and provides rebate programs to its users.

Its patented heat-sink technology allows heat to move away from the bulb, extending its shelf life to up to 30 years. This feature provides 32 percent temperature reduction, 48 percent increase in thermal conductivity and 223 percent more surface area. These statistics simply mean more light and brightness per wattage, better durability, and longer life span.

The Starfly product line is 22 percent to 81 percent more reliable. The Sunfly product line offers the only fully dimmable, fully equivalent 75 to 125 Watt LEDs on the market. These products are like buying a car that gets 232 miles per gallon and lasts 3 million miles!

Current News

The State of Texas Emerging Technology Fund announced a $3 million grant to Firefly LED Lighting for its product commercialization. The company, a member of the Austin Technology Incubator (ATI), is a pioneer in designing and manufacturing Smart LED lights. By creating a fully modular LED lamp, Firefly was able to increase output and heat-sink size or reduce heat-sink size in response to rapid LED technology growth. Wholly made in the USA, these lights are energy efficient, reducing cost of ownership by up to 93 percent.

The funding allows Firefly to bring LED lights closer to American homes as it manufactures LED lights for residential applications, including kitchen, cabinets, lamps and mood lighting. Firefly LED lights remain highly cost-effective when used in commercial and business establishments, such as hotels, restaurants, grocery stores, outdoor, retail environments, and government structures.

 

 

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