The Lovelight Story
“An interior designer that we were collaborating with commented that she ‘loved light in her spaces.’ This off-hand comment resonated with the team and the name ‘Lovelight’ was born.”
This month we have decided to take you on a journey all the way back to where Lovelight began. It’s a tale of two brothers, their mate and their ambition to “build something amazing and have fun while they did it.”
It was July of 2006 and Jason Lewis, who was working in Queensland, knew just three things for sure; that he understood home automation, that he needed to move back to Melbourne to be closer to family, and that he wanted to work with Jeremy Gomo. So, Jase went with his gut. He moved back to Melbourne, partnered with Jeremy and started iRazzle. To this day Jase credits this decision as the most critical to his success; “you need to be able to have fun and with Jem work felt more like fun than anything else.”
Over the next few years the pair built a high-end home automation business with window furnishings as an added offering since Jase, “had soft furnishings in his blood.” Jase and Jeremy quickly discovered and began to nurture the importance of client relationships realising that, “after working with clients for months, to create their home automation, we had built such great rapport with them that if we offered window furnishings as an add-on they almost always gave us the business because they simply liked and trusted us.” The importance of relationship building stuck with Jase and Ryan and became a key value within their business moving forward.
For the next few years the business oscillated between the home automation and window furnishing worlds. Clearly innovation, fun and hard work was paying off - but even so, the team soon came to a crossroads. “We somehow managed to wrangle a meeting to pitch to Melbourne’s biggest volume home builder - Metricon. We knew we basically had no right to be there but we were so pumped to try! We went and had beautiful presentation folders created with our campaign slogan - ‘Pure Lumier’ - printed all over them. We suited up and showed up to present. We pitched a combination of home automation and window furnishings. And…
It just wasn’t what Metricon was looking for.”
Jeremy and Jase resigned themselves to try even harder and take on the feedback that the Metricon team had given them - along with the generous offer to “come back and try again in three years time.”
They took that as all the direction, focus and drive that was needed. They brought on Jase’s brother Ryan - fresh from working as a Junior accountant- with the knowledge that anything they asked him to do would be done perfectly.
But first - a rebrand. Up till this point the team had been operating as iRazzle, Push and Lifestyle Technologies & Design - they now understood that their offering needed to be more singularly focused. As Nick Bippus Lovelight’s Volume Builder General Manager tells it, “the new name was derived from a site consult with an interior designer - while selling home automation this interior designer commented that she ‘loved light in her spaces’ this off-hand comment resonated with the team and the name ‘Lovelight’ was born.”
With the new brand now cemented, “we vowed to come back stronger than ever” by developing a system specifically for Metricon, “we took the time to build relationships and talk to staff at Metricon. This gave us the key insights necessary to really understand what their business needed in order to create a meaningful offering.
At the time Metricon’s supplier had a process where they took time out of each client’s colour selection appointment to measure and quote on a window furnishings package, Jase recalls, “we knew there had to be a way to streamline this process, so we gathered a list of every window that Metricon had installed in 2011 and we ran an algorithm to determine an average blind price for each of our products. Thus creating ‘One Price.”
Using this model, as part of the colour room process, the Metricon design consultant was empowered to simply count the number of windows and multiply that by their retail price in order to produce a quote on the spot and have it added to the contract instantly. It sounds simple and obvious - but in creating this methodology the team revolutionised the process of selling window furnishings in the Australian volume builder market. It was this process that won the team the Metricon account that they had been previously turned down on and simultaneously the Burbank account too.
That pivotal moment of winning the Metricon account further spurred Lovelight forward. They sold Push to Schneider electrics and dedicated their focus to the window furnishings side of the business, now confident that they had the most to offer in this space.
With the volume segment of the business developing and growing at a rapid speed, Jeremy and Ryan set themselves to establishing and grow the Commercial and Custom divisions of the business respectively. By leveraging their relationships with Architects, boutique builders and interior designers, Lovelight was able to establish collaborations on some of the country’s foremost architecturally designed homes.
Equally it was Lovelight’s ‘out of the box thinking’ that helped create the SWP offering for developers, “when window furnishings are not in the contract - we offer them as a pre-settlement install which creates a turn key solution. The developer can thereby be in charge of the aesthetic and their clients are able to move in and on night one have everything they need, already installed.”
By going both deep and wide in their thinking Lovelight has developed offerings specifically for Architects, volume builders, large scale developers and even DIY enthusiasts. They have gone from a two man team to a 52 person strong and ever growing business across 4 divisions with an Architect designed showroom in South Yarra and a distribution warehouse in Campbellfield, offices across Australia and now New Zealand with, of course, continued ambitions of world domination.