PORT WASHINGTON, NY – WAC Lighting has acquired all operating assets related to the Schonbek brand from Swarovski Lighting, Ltd., which includes the manufacturing plant that will remain in Plattsburgh, NY. WAC, a manufacturer of LED architectural, task and decorative lighting, as well as smart ceiling fans, will now own and operate a key U.S.-based factory that will expand its domestic manufacturing capabilities to include fabrication, finishing and assembly, the company noted.
The Plattsburgh factory will focus on made-to-order and custom products for all of the brands in the portfolio, including Modern Forms, dweLED, WAC Lighting, LIMITED and AiSPiRE. It will also play a strategic role in designing new products and developing new luxury finishes for all brands. This synergy underscores WAC’s commitment to vertical-integration and market expansion, the firm reported.
Schonbek is a global brand with established distribution in Europe, Australia and the Middle East, where WAC does not yet have a presence. This strategic acquisition can be expected to be a precursor to an introduction of the W Group companies into those markets.
“If not for the time Dirk spent at Schonbek and then Swarovski, WAC would not have been approached to carry on the Schonbek tradition,” stated Shelley Wald about her partner and co-CEO of WAC, Dirk Wald. “But veterans of the lighting industry will likely see the union of WAC and Schonbek as a natural progression.”
According to Dirk Wald, who co-founded Modern Forms, dweLED, WAC Landscape, LIMITED and AiSPiRE brands, “We are excited to acquire the Schonbek brand of luxury crystal lighting and collaborate with the talented people in Plattsburgh to continue this proud tradition. After July 1, there will be a period of investment in the operations necessary to secure the future in Plattsburgh, beginning with a ‘killer’ new product launch that we have been planning for several months in anticipation of this acquisition. Leveraging WAC’s strengths in nimble product development, the new Schonbek product launch – to be unveiled simultaneously in New York City and Montreal this coming Fall – will represent the largest product introduction in the history of Schonbek.”
“My family and I were thrilled to hear this news,” says Andrew Schonbek. “Working with Dirk was a joy, as I witnessed first-hand his creative energy, passion for the product, impeccable design sense and understanding and advocacy of customers. I predict that these unique talents will soon find expression in a creative renaissance at Schonbek that will once again position it as a leading, cutting edge brand. There’s nobody I know of who’s better positioned than Dirk and WAC to carry forward the legacy that four generations of Schonbeks labored to build since 1870.”
Completion of the transaction is subject to various closing conditions. Subject to such conditions, the transaction is expected to close by June 30, 2021. Terms of the purchase were not disclosed.