Design LED Products (DLP) have developed and patented an innovative printed lightguide and LED illumination technology and related lightguide structures. These thin, flexible displays have a range of applications, including LED backlights, illuminated capacitive and membrane switches, illuminated branding and instrumentation panels.

Formed in 2004, the Livingston-based company’s first products were for signage and point of sale applications, but with an increasing demand for this technology, the firm has rapidly expanded into other markets. DLP currently operates in a range of sectors, including automotive, medical and consumer, and is continually exploring new market opportunities. 

The Business Challenge

The company identified a number of prospective customers in the consumer electronics and white goods, medical instrumentation and mobile phone markets.  However, in order to display the full potential of their printed light-guide technology, they recognised a need to illustrate the product applications for each market opportunity.

It was agreed that development of a full prototype for each market area would be cost-prohibitive, but the firm did require a better means of displaying the full potential of their technology to clients.

The Solution

Following the success of a previous project with Interface – The knowledge connection for business, DLP approached the team once again to help them source academic expertise who could advise them on how to communicate and showcase their products more effectively. 

Interface investigated the possibility of a placement project in a relevant field, for example product design, graphic design or engineering and placed a design student from Glasgow School of Art, in DLP for a month. This placement student subsequently secured a job with Meso, a design engineering company for digital media and media systems and a potential customer for DLP. The student took the designs he had created for DLP and consequently helped to develop a business relationship between DLP and Meso.

Interface then secured further support from Glasgow Caledonian University and another student was placed with DLP for a further two months to work on new applications of technology in other new markets. 

Stuart Bain at Design LED Products said:  “As a result of the placement programme we are now able to professionally demonstrate graphically the very technical functionality of our products without the need for prototype manufacturing costing several thousands of pounds per application.  Working with Interface helped us to quickly secure the relevant expertise to help us to effectively illustrate our product applications, which has in turn allowed us to develop relationships with customers in new markets and drive forward our business.”