THE ABBAS HOSSEINI INTERVIEW
MIDDLE EAST REGIONAL PARTNER
XERO LINEAR LIGHTING
It’s no surprise to those who know him that Abbas found his way into the lighting business. His fondness for motivational books is a perfect match with lighting pathways for others! More to the point, his electrical engineering background, strong technical knowledge, manufacturing, research and development experience are a perfect match for the industry. He also has a great way with people, establishing fast connections with clients and colleagues. Today, based in the UAE, Abbas is focussing on the Middle East and Africa Markets for Xero. Fortunately he has a passion for both coffee and travel, because he’s sure to be drinking a lot of the former, while doing a lot of the latter.
How did you first enter the lighting industry?
I started in the lighting industry over a decade ago by working in the production line and worked my way up through a variety of roles from electrical wiring supervisor to technical manager and my more recent role as a general manager of an LED lighting company.
You have just started your new position as XERO Middle East Regional Partner. What new opportunities and products will you be offering clients in this growing region?
It is truly incredible to have become the regional partner for Xero. We are bringing a state of the art range of lighting products that this region has not yet seen. Our clients have the opportunity to now directly access Xero’s patented innovative technology. Our industry first, Standard 10-year warranty has brought about a very enthusiastic response from current and potential clients.
How have you and your family settled in?
My family and have adjusted really well in Dubai and love the lifestyle, we get to enjoy year-round sunshine. The city has provided us some amazing opportunities, it’s amazing how fast developments are completed, where you once saw sand dunes now lies a cluster of high-rises or a villa development. Dubai is ever-changing and growing, so we feel very blessed to be a part of it.
As a Partner you have local shareholding which a unique model within lighting Industry. What do you see as the main advantages/benefits?
I have had the pleasure to work alongside Edwin Sargeant, Xero Founder and Managing director, in the past. When he explained to me his vision and model for Xero I could automatically see myself being a part of it. This partnership model allows me to partly own and operate of the regions business, work with a product and team I am truly passionate about, whilst also providing autonomy to develop Xero in the Middle east and Africa regions. I really see our collaborative efforts and success as a win-win situation for both sides.
You have an electrical engineering background with an emphasis on technical knowledge, manufacturing, and research and development – obviously these qualifications are extremely suited to your new role – how do you see them being utilised on a day to day basis?
The knowledge I hold in the electrical field allows me to assist clients on a day to day basis, having a good understanding of control systems, technical knowledge of lighting design and Xero products enables me to troubleshoot where required and gives our clients the confidence that you are a solution provider for all of their needs.
Are there any products in the XERO portfolio that need to be ‘tweaked’ to accommodate the unique conditions prevalent in the Middle East?
At Xero, we are already well ahead by incorporating Ceramic based LED boards and 1.5 amp led chips in our luminaires. These leds operate at 13% to 23% of their capacity, translating into a much lower heat generation of the LEDs. The focus we have on creating state of the art thermal management systems and designing our products based on 50-degree ambient temperature ensures our products will withstand the harsh conditions in this region.
Your area covers the Middle East and Africa. While there are a lot of similarities between countries there are also a lot of differences. what challenges/opportunities will they provide?
I see more opportunities than challenges but we will nevertheless be researching and preparing for any barriers that may arise upon entering into any country in the Middle East and African region.
The African market is providing a lot of opportunities right now with democratization, rising incomes and a growing middle class. This is driving Sub-Saharan African states to experience economic growth and it’s expected to continue through to 2020. Economic impact has led to a stark increase in building of infrastructure such as Roads, hospitals, schools and manufacturing providing Xero with some great opportunities to capitalize on.
Dubai is also well under way with its preparations for Expo 2020, we are looking to move quickly with projects relevant to the upcoming Expo.
XERO offers innovative initiatives that are unique and progressive to Linear Lighting design. How will this help our rate of development? Where do you see XERO 3 years from now?
The overwhelming response I have already received from lighting designers, consultants and architects indicates that Xero will undeniably become the next leader in linear lighting within the region and internationally. We are approaching EXPO 2020 in the next couple of years, which provides us with some great opportunities, there is an increasing demand for Australian made luminaires and the fact that our technology is a truly an industry first will see Xero surpass all expectations within the next few years.