Universal Lighting Technologies

Universal Lighting Technologies
Industry Ballast Manufacturing
Founded 1943
Headquarters Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Key people
Pat Sullivan CEO
Products Lighting & Lighting Controls
Number of employees
2,330 (2011)
Website www.unvlt.com

Universal Lighting Technologies is based in Nashville, Tennessee and is part of the Panasonic family of companies. They design and manufacture high-efficiency lighting ballasts and control systems and produce electronic and magnetic ballasts for CFLs, linear fluorescent bulbs, and HID lighting, as well as digital and analog dimming systems. The company acquired Vossloh-Schwabe’s North American operations in 2009. This allowed them to also offer a full range of HID products, ignitors, transformers, lampholders, capacitors, and other components.[1]


Universal Lighting Technologies originated about 60 years ago from the combination of two lighting industry corporations – Universal Manufacturing Company and Triad-Utrad Energy Savings Incorporated. Universal Manufacturing Company was one of the first companies to manufacture lighting ballasts, and Triad-Utrad was the first company to introduce the electronic lighting ballast.


Triad-Utrad was founded in 1943,[2] and, with the installation of electronic DC ballasts in the mass transit industry, was the first in the industry to introduce the electronic ballast, continuing on with later introductions of ballasts for T12, T8, and compact fluorescent lamps.

Universal Manufacturing Company

Founded in 1947, Universal Manufacturing is known for setting many standards in the lighting industry. It was one of the first ballast manufacturers to implement a Technical Engineering Services (TES™) department that gave advice on ballast selection, installation, and on-the-job troubleshooting and is still renowned throughout the industry today.[3] It was also the first to develop HID ballast retrofit kits that included ballasts with color-coded leads, making retrofits fast and easy. In 2002, Universal Lighting Technologies acquired certain assets from Energy Savings, Inc. (ESI). With the addition of lighting dimming and controls, Universal has enhanced their product offering to include energy-efficient lighting system solutions, and introduced the technology for low profile and universal input voltage (108-305V) ballasts.

Universal Lighting Today

Universal Lighting’s product brands are under the Universal®, Triad®, Vossloh-Schwabe, and Signa® brand names. They have over 65 patents in lighting tech and have worldwide distribution and operations.[4] A key strategy of theirs continues to be research and product development, with R&D facilities in Austin, TX, Huntsville, AL, and Schaumburg, IL.


  1. "Vossloh-Schwabe News; http://www.vossloh-schwabe.com/images/news/application_pdf-101-1-1112.pdf; 2009"
  2. "Triad Magnetics Profile Page"; "Archived copy". Archived from the original on March 26, 2012. Retrieved June 27, 2011. 2009"
  3. "Lighting Controls Association (LCA); "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 20, 2011. Retrieved June 19, 2011.
  4. "Universal Website; "Archived copy". Archived from the original on November 3, 2011. Retrieved June 19, 2011.
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