Sea Gull Lighting Company History
About Us| History| Directions
 
1919 – The Birth of Sea Gull Lighting®
The Sea Gull Lighting story began in 1919 at the workbench of a small lighting specialty store in Philadelphia, PA just after the First World War. Even then founder, Henry Siegel, understood the values of quality, continuity and variety, while keeping an eye to the future. He used his design talents to create patented hard-wired and portable fixtures over the next several decades, which set the stage for a long and successful future.

1940s – 1970s – A "Booming" America
In 1941, Martin Hirsch married Henry Siegel's eldest daughter, Selma, and that same year joined Sea Gull Lighting. Shortly after celebrating the company's 25th anniversary in 1944, Mr. Siegel invited his other son-in-law, Edwin Solomon, to join the family business in their 3,000 square foot factory. Then in 1945, returning G.I.'s fostered an economic and social growth that rapidly expanded the population. For Sea Gull Lighting, the once boutique specialty store, the nation's growth meant a large boom for business as well. These post-war appetites sparked the company's first major expansion, growing the staff and moving them up to an 8,000 square foot manufactory. Over the next 20 years the team of Siegel, Hirsch and Solomon made a successful trio. Henry designed, Marty manufactured and Ed sold. They continued to expand the company and in 1972 upgraded their headquarters once again, this time from the plant in Philadelphia to a 19 acre campus in Riverside, NJ.

1990 – 2004 – The Age of Technology
Entering the "Nineties", Sea Gull Lighting celebrated two milestones with the company's 75th and 80th anniversaries while a fourth generation of the Hirsch and Solomon families joined the company to lead a prosperous brand -- based on founding principles, cutting edge manufacturing and strategic expansion. The ensuing decade was a fruitful time for the home building industry and Sea Gull Lighting saw another great growth opportunity. In 1993, a Builder Sales department was established that would develop long-term partnerships with national, regional and local home builders. The early 1990s also saw the birth of Sea Gull Lighting's Ambiance® Lighting Systems. Ambiance® is a family of luminaires designed to deliver function, mood and trend setting style through innovative product creations. In 2004, as the home building sector boomed, a new state-of-the-art 500,000 square foot distribution center was opened on 62 acres in Burlington, NJ, just 15 minutes from the company's headquarters. The new improvement allowed Sea Gull Lighting to generate supply according to their customers' inventory needs while offering superior freight services.

2005 – 2011 – Sea Gull Lighting Joins Generation Brands™
Throughout the company's achievements, CEO Edwin Solomon was known for saying, “Profit is a by-product of a job well done.” This principle held true for both Sea Gull's bottom line and the numerous awards they were poised to receive. In 2005, Sea Gull Lighting received the first of six EPA ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year Awards for their commitment to energy efficient fixtures across 15 product categories. Four years later, in 2008, they were also recognized by the American Lighting Association and Consortium for Energy Efficiency for product innovation with the first of three Lighting for Tomorrow Awards. During these years, their success also garnered attention from the business world. In 2005, private equity investment firm, Quad-C, purchased Sea Gull Lighting and incorporated them into their growing number of brands. Quad-C's 2006 merger of Encompass Lighting Brands into their portfolio of lighting and ceiling fan providers made the group the largest source of decorative and functional lighting products in North America. Together the collective, now totaling 11 brand names, was repositioned as Generation Brands™ (GB), and Quad-C remains the owner of GB and Sea Gull Lighting today.

2012 – Present -- Poised for the Future
In the Summer of 2012, Sea Gull Lighting moved its headquarters to Skokie, IL -- joining forces with several other brands within the GB organization at a central location. This move allows the company to maximize financial and operational efficiencies through shared, functional resources, while the two Sea Gull distribution centers, which remain in NJ and NV, continue to ensure inventory flow and freight efficiencies. 2012 also marked Sea Gull Lighting's most recent accolades , once again, earning the ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year Award. Sea Gull Lighting's focus remains on delivering on-trend, high quality lighting products with unparalleled customer service and best-in-class availability. For almost 100 years, they have built strong relationships and earned a reputation amongst channel partners, builders, contractors and homeowners to be among the very best. Sea Gull Lighting looks forward to the evolving business landscape, and with its continued commitment to serve, and to listen and learn from its valued customers, is poised for success as it soon enters its second century of operation.

Henry S. Siegel
Starting in Philadelphia as a designer and retailer of patented portable and hardwired devices, Henry Siegel developed the first brilliant Sea Gull Lighting ideas in 1919.