During the last economic crisis in Ireland, the building industry had all but collapsed and those employed in the building trades had to adapt or go without. The focus shifted to improving the home you lived in presently, rather than selling and moving. The mantra became “don’t move, improve”. The focus shifted to home energy efficiency and grants through the Home Energy Savings Scheme (later to become the Better Energy Homes Scheme) became available to the public for a range of energy efficiency upgrades to their homes.
Having trained as a BER assessor, I initiated the inception of an idea to carry out energy efficient retrofit measures to existing homes. The company was to be known as Kingtherm Home Energy. Following the receipt of a survey and recommended upgrades to a large property in Co Leitrim, I noted that one of the recommendations was to install proprietary recessed light covers over some 30 recessed light fittings in order to eliminate warm air loss and draught infiltration. Having tried to source these items, I discovered that nothing was available from the builder’s providers or suppliers and what was available to order online was either unsuitable or excessively overpriced.
I canvassed some of the insulation material suppliers and found quite an interest in such a product if one was available at a reasonable cost. I decided to set about developing such a product.
In 2010, with my first product design safety tested (BSEN60598-1) and launched, I began sales under the name Downlight Covers Direct and my first customer was in Trinity College Dublin. Since then, sales have gradually grown and more and more customers have found me solely by word of mouth and my simple website. My customers range from the DIY enthusiast to insulation contractors, architects, builders providers and merchants.
In 2020, my son Damon came on board with experience in online and social media marketing. We have now switched from a simple web page to our latest Shopify account with various payment options and hope to expand our customer base in the coming months and years.