In the Trenches: Akshay Gupta's light touch

Editor's note: This blog is part of the continuing SBO series In the Trenches.

Akshay Gupta reached out to SBO a couple of months ago with what he thought might be a compelling story.

Gupta's company Kaydas, it turns out, distributes light-emitting diode bulbs and had just outfitted its items in Beaverton's Chennai Masala restaurant.

While the pitch was a little light (no pun intended), I ended up talking with Gupta anyway because I wanted to learn more about LEDs, which popped up from time to time in our pieces about net-zero energy buildings. The items also seemed like a great example of how businesses can save money even on products that, at best, enable a form of inconspicuous consumption.

LEDs are still emerging as a product category, Gupta explained, so his company provides counsel on usage requirements and ensuring they serve the right application. The Kaydas website offers designers a guide on specifying which types of lights best fit a given space.

Gupta explained to me that because the items employ a diode that radiates light in a flat plane, they must be situated in a manner that provides the best possible beam angle or simple be placed in a spot where omnidirectional beams are workable.

To that end, Kaydas deftly helped install such items at Chennai Masala as a five-watt candeleabra bulb that has the equivalent brightness of a 60-watt bulb at 80 percent of the energy use.

"I'm big into sustainability and personally, I feel strongly about what I think is a little bit of greenwashing going on," Gupta said. "To me, true sustainability comes down to reducing the consumption of resources. Until you reduce, what you do doesn't matter."

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