#Sustainability Snapshot with Zenterra Lighting
Developing and Promoting Innovative, More Sustainable Products
-- with a balanced consideration of energy conservation, health & safety, product longevity, performance optimisation and end-of-life recyclability
Mr Jonathan Lim
Deputy Managing Director of Zenterra Lighting
Co-Founder of Ecodo, an in-house green LED brand at Zenterra Lighting (Photo: Jonathan Lim)
Sustainability is not new to Zenterra Lighting -- they have long been encouraging consumers to switch to more energy-efficient lights. More than ten years ago, Zenterra Lighting conducted a trade-in drive, encouraging customers to trade-in their non-LED lights to more energy-efficient LED lights.
Driving the transition towards LED lights has been very important to the Zenterra Lighting team from both environmental and cost-saving standpoints, as LED lights have generally been more energy efficient by about 50% compared to fluorescent lights of the same brightness.
Some of Zenterra Lighting's standing LED lights at their showroom
As part of the SFIC Young Leaders Chapter, Jonathan attended the ASEAN Youth Furniture Exchange around 4 years ago in the Philippines. This was when his interest in sustainability developed more seriously. He learnt more about the value of holistic sustainability at that event and started thinking about product modularity, using recyclable materials like aluminium and other potential sustainability initiatives that he could work on at Zenterra Lighting.
The event eventually led him to develop Ecodo, Zenterra Lighting’s more eco-friendly product.
Jonathan (second from left) at the ASEAN Youth Furniture Exchange (Photo: Jonathan Lim)
Developing and Promoting Ecodo as an Innovative and More Sustainable Product
Ecodo is a brand of more energy-efficient LED drivers that was developed in-house by Jonathan and his team at Zenterra Lighting.
It is more energy-efficient than normal LED bulbs and 75% more efficient than fluorescent lights, according to lab tests by their partners.
As the Zenterra Lighting team is confident in its longevity and quality, they offer a three-year warranty for Ecodo. This is longer than the minimum light warranty regulation of 6 months, which came about with the establishment of the lemon law.
Jonathan was driven to co-create Ecodo with his team as he wanted to develop a Singaporean light brand -- that could guarantee a higher quality than many other international brands available in the local market.
Certificate recognising Ecodo for powering the best eco-friendly LED downlights
As Zenterra Lighting prioritises safety, the team made sure to attain the Safety Mark for Ecodo, so as to give both their customers and themselves a peace of mind. This was despite how Ecodo's new three-colour tone technology that had never been seen before in the market at that time entailed significantly higher testing costs for them. As such, Ecodo became the first brand to have a three-colour tone lighting product with a Safety Mark.
In line with their emphasis on product safety, the Zenterra Lighting team has been communicating the value of Ecodo's Safety Mark through their product showcase panels in their showrooms.
Informative product showcase of Ecodo's safety advantage at Zenterra Lighting's showroom
Beyond Product Sustainability -- Exploring Process Sustainability
On top of product sustainability, Zenterra Lighting has also been looking into more sustainable business processes and practices. Jonathan from Zenterra Lighting shared that he discovered the latter's value by attending SFIC’s events. He believes that lighting companies like his have more potential in improving their process rather than product sustainability, in the current market landscape of light technologies. Besides the fitting, It is challenging to make lighting parts like LED chips more sustainable, as they are generally not replaceable.
For a start, Zenterra Lighting has been playing a part in waste management by recycling the paper they use in their showroom. To reduce paper consumption and waste in the first place, they have been using digital name cards.
The company has also been complying with national environmental regulations. They have been reporting on the weight and number of imported regulated electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) to NEA since 2020, as part of the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) System for E-waste Management System.
Moving Forward -- Environmental Projects in the Works
To further advance environmental sustainability at Zenterra Lighting, Jonathan is exploring the launch of another customer outreach campaign, which will encourage their customers to bring back their faulty or old lights for repair or replacement at a discount.
Additionally, the Zenterra Lighting team looks forward to exploring greener collaborations with fellow SFIC members.
Beyond the Environmental -- Maintaining Social Corporate Sustainability
Beyond environmental sustainability, Zenterra Lighting has also been maintaining some aspects of social sustainability as a company. For instance, as part of efforts to uphold child rights, Zenterra Lighting has a no child labour policy in their own factories.
With regards to health and safety, Zenterra Lighting ensures that the wallpapers and curtains that they bring into the showroom from their partners are formaldehyde-free. This is partly driven by their customers' demand and partly driven by the company's prioritisation of health and safety, for both their consumers and employees.
For any customer who doesn't already know about the importance of low-formaldehyde products, Zenterra Lighting's staff have been trained to share about them when customers visit their showroom. The staff will measure and show potential customers the formaldehyde emission levels of each product, using measurement tools that their suppliers have provided.
By the time Zenterra Lighting's customers leave their showroom, all of them would have gained some knowledge about formaldehyde.
Zenterra Lighting also gives due attention to diversity and inclusivity amongst their staff. Jonathan and the team welcome employees of all races -- the company has employed staff who are Vietnamese, Chinese, Indian, Bangladeshi and a myriad of other nationalities. Any staff can play music of their liking for the showroom in different languages, including dialects like Cantonese!
The company has a very inclusive culture — the Zenterra Lighting team made sure to buy halal Jollibee for their Muslim staff for dinner, after attending a 7th lunar month event together one night.
Advancing Along the Sustainability Journey with Support and Purpose
When asked about what drives him to continue on his sustainability journey, Jonathan shared that family support has played a big role in sustaining his efforts. His father was very supportive as he too saw the value of sustainability. This includes how incorporating more sustainable business processes and developing more sustainable products can generate savings in production costs, whilst ameliorating the company's environmental footprint.
For instance, the incorporation of the POS system enabled Zenterra Lighting to transition from hard copy, manually written and filed invoices to paper-free, digitally generated invoices. This helped to drastically reduce the company's paper usage, whilst saving time and manpower costs that would otherwise be required to manage the physical invoices.
Now, Zenterra Lighting’s POS system has been issuing electronic invoices by default for around 5 years, unless our customer requests for their invoice to be printed.
On top of family support, governmental support has also helped to finance the sustainability-linked initiatives that Jonathan has led. Zenterra Lighting’s adoption of the POS technology was supported by Enterprise Singapore’s Productivity and Innovation Credit (PIC) Scheme back then, which has since been revamped into the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG).
Throughout his sustainability journey, the key factor that has kept Jonathan going is his understanding of sustainability’s business value, especially in terms of opening doors to interesting opportunities in the trade.
- This includes exploring new environmentally-friendly materials & innovative ways to design, manufacture and style different lights.
- These opportunities can potentially benefit the business’ bottom-line, carve out a niche for the business, and help the business do good for the environment all at the same time!
Modern aluminum profile LED Lights showcased in the Smart Home Experience Corner of Zenterra Lighting's Showroom. The colours of these lights can be remotely changed to any colour on the colour wheel picker via a mobile app. Lights can also be programmed to automatically adjust their brightness or turn on or off, depending on the customer’s coded lifestyle options (e.g. movie time, lunch time or work time).
Part of Zenterra Lighting's hanging light collection at their showroom
Introduction to Zenterra Lighting:
Zenterra Lighting offers efficient and modern solutions to light up your homes. From decorative pendant light, led downlights to wall lamps, and light bulbs, it is here to help you make your homes a little brighter.
Type of Furniture Company: Retail
- Energy efficiency, health & safety, product longevity
- Lighting products
Aluminum profile LED lights employing Ecodo at Zenterra Lighting's artistic showroom
Specific Eco Product & Service Lines:
- Ecodo (LED)
- Designed with a balance of product longevity, optimal performance and affordability in mind
- 75% more efficient than typical lighting products according to company-commissioned lab tests
- Offers 3 years warranty & 1 year on-site servicing
Key Environmental Initiatives
- Signed the Alliance for Action on Sustainable Spaces Low Formaldehyde Commitment Statement
Key Social Initiatives
- HR welcomes employees of all races and nationalities
Upcoming Sustainability Initiatives
- Exploring the launch of a campaign that will encourage customers to bring back their faulty or old lights for repair or replacement at a discount