Have a question about Echelon?

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This is your forum to ask questions and, where appropriate, receive answers from Ron. You can read through our most popular questions and answers below.

1: Is there any opportunity for additional revenue from ENEL?

A: While at present we have no expectation for additional committed revenue from ENEL, we are of course willing to sell products to them, and explore future opportunities

A: While at present we have no expectation for additional committed revenue from ENEL, we are of course willing to sell products to them, and explore future opportunities

2: Do you have an update on M&A activity?

A: Of course M&A is always possible if it makes sense for our business.  Having just completed a comprehensive market check with our GS advisors, we are not actively pursuing this path and r ...

A: Of course M&A is always possible if it makes sense for our business.  Having just completed a comprehensive market check with our GS advisors, we are not actively pursuing this path and remain focused on executing our business plan”.

3: How quickly do you think you can grow your lighting business? 

A: Outdoor lighting continues to rapidly change over to LEDs and the value of connected lighting is becoming clear to the market. For example, there are hundreds of cities the size of Cambridge, ...

A: Outdoor lighting continues to rapidly change over to LEDs and the value of connected lighting is becoming clear to the market. For example, there are hundreds of cities the size of Cambridge, MA in the US alone. We are optimistic about the opportunities we see and are executing on our growth plan. 

4: Are you partnering with anyone to supplement your sales force? 

A: We use partners in almost every deal we engage in, for both our embedded and our lighting businesses. In lighting, our partners predominantly include manufacturer's representatives, Energy Ser ...

A: We use partners in almost every deal we engage in, for both our embedded and our lighting businesses. In lighting, our partners predominantly include manufacturer's representatives, Energy Services Companies, fixture manufacturers and systems integrators. We do believe that, over time, these channels will be a 'force multiplier' for us.

5: What is lighting as a percentage of total revenue now?

A: We do not break out lighting as a percentage of revenue.  It is a more lumpy business than our embedded one, but over multiple quarters we expect it to be a growth market for us while our ...

A: We do not break out lighting as a percentage of revenue.  It is a more lumpy business than our embedded one, but over multiple quarters we expect it to be a growth market for us while our embedded revenues remain on a long-term downward trajectory.

6: Hi Ron, how is the product line now similar or differs from companies such as Acuity, Revolution Lighting Tech., Osram, etc. I would assume the big players like GE and Philips already have product lines which compete with Echelon and/or the other companies I mentioned? Thanks.

A: Our advantage versus the large, integrated players is that our solution is independent of the end points, allowing us to network together fixtures and sensors from many manufacturers so that we do ...

A: Our advantage versus the large, integrated players is that our solution is independent of the end points, allowing us to network together fixtures and sensors from many manufacturers so that we do not lock the end customer into one supplier. We only sell controls, based on our 25-year experience with operational technologies and use cases. We are not a lighting manufacturer who dabbles in controls, nor a computer networking company trying to connect devices to systems designed for humans to access the Internet. 

We believe Echelon is the only supplier with an integrated power line and RF communication option, allowing for hybrid solutions. In Bellingham, for example, the customer is connecting decorative fixtures with power line so that there are no unsightly antennas and roadway lighting with RF for ease of installation and wide coverage. We have a private network with very low recurring revenues and risk of obsolescence. Cellular-based systems (including ultra-narrow-band), for example, typically charge on a per pole basis and may be obsoleted by the carrier. 

We are engineered for low purchase, installation and operating costs. Some competitors are trying a broad 'swiss army knife' approach to lighting controls. For example, offering the option to connect security cameras to each pole along with lighting controls. Not only does this burden every pole with the cost of broadband connections and processing power, it also makes administration more difficult as design centers for security and lighting controls are very different. We have proven reliability at scale, with one of the world’s largest "IoT" network running on our protocols (Enel meter-reading) and we believe we are one of the only "border to border" outdoor lighting control system in Cambridge, MA.

7: Ron, why did you stop having conference calls?

A: Given we have limited analyst coverage at this time, and to make things more efficient for investors as well as the Company, we have adopted a more comprehensive press release. We encourage investo ...

A: Given we have limited analyst coverage at this time, and to make things more efficient for investors as well as the Company, we have adopted a more comprehensive press release. We encourage investors to visit our website to view published SEC filings, current product information and updates, our blog and also ask questions via our “Ask Ron” investor forum.

8: Hi Ron. How come the board and management are not buying stock?

A: Echelon’s board and management are fully committed to the company’s long-term vision and are invested in Echelon’s growth strategy. The regulatory window of opportunity for an insider to buy or sel ...

A: Echelon’s board and management are fully committed to the company’s long-term vision and are invested in Echelon’s growth strategy. The regulatory window of opportunity for an insider to buy or sell shares is very limited. In addition, the disclosure committee can impose additional blackout periods where buying or selling is prohibited depending on the availability of information at any given time, which narrows the opportunity even further.

9: Hi Ron, I am getting tired of losses every quarter and guidance for losses in the next upcoming quarter. Do you have a plan to make the company profitable and, if you do, when?

A: We continue to look for ways to reduce our operating expense and breakeven levels, as our historically low OPEX in Q1 attests to. Our primary focus at this time, however, must be on growth. this is ...

A: We continue to look for ways to reduce our operating expense and breakeven levels, as our historically low OPEX in Q1 attests to. Our primary focus at this time, however, must be on growth. this is why we have targeted the fast-changing LED lighting market in general and the outdoor lighting market specifically for our systems solutions. We remain confident in the potential for lighting control systems and believe that the new products we have introduced recently and the changes we have made to the sales force can accelerate customer acquisition and revenue. We are encouraged by the increased customer activity that we highlighted in this quarter's earnings announcement.

10: Hi Ron. A year ago you stated you had a lot of things going on and had hired Goldman Sachs to investigate every opportunity including acquisitions, raising capital, joint partnerships and even selling out. What has happened in this area? Are we still retaining Goldman Sachs?

A: We continue to evaluate our strategic options and have no update on the process at this time. Management and the Board remain committed to our strategy and our focus on financial discipline.

A: We continue to evaluate our strategic options and have no update on the process at this time. Management and the Board remain committed to our strategy and our focus on financial discipline.

Congratulations on a Great Quarter and also for being decisive on lowering Accounting costs and terminating the strategic consulting contract to focus on sales and growth. It looks to me like you and Echelon are doing things right and are building a bright future for all of us.
On this webpage, we may make statements related to our overall business outlook, future financial operating results, accounting matters and future prospects. These are forward-looking statements based on certain assumptions and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. We encourage you to read the risks described in our press releases, as well as those in our SEC reports, including our report on Form 10-K and subsequent reports on Form 10-Q for a more complete disclosure of the risks and uncertainties related to our business.