Philips Lighting unveils latest advertising medium…  the carpet you walk on

    Birmingham National Exhibition Centre (NEC) is venue for world’s first luminous carpets with internet-connected LED lights that convey animated adverts and messages to millions of visitors

    January 20, 2017

    Birmingham, United Kingdom – Philips Lighting (Euronext Amsterdam ticker: LIGHT), a global leader in lighting, and Desso, a leading brand in sustainable and innovative carpet flooring, is equipping Britain’s largest exhibition center, NEC Birmingham, with  Luminous Carpets – futuristic floor coverings embedded with cutting-edge LED technology that light up to create adverts, animations and messages. It is the first Luminous Carpets installation in the world to be used for advertising, opening up a new medium for businesses to communicate with their audiences.


    The NEC is the first exhibition centre in the world to adopt Luminous Carpets, which are being used to welcome visitors entering the 200,000m2 West Midlands venue via its Bridge Link area. Visitors to this weekend’s January Furniture Show will be the first to experience Luminous Carpets and will be given a unique greeting on arrival.


    Philips LED lights underneath the carpets glow to create dynamic, moving adverts, as well as animations, graphics, effects and messages such as directions, greetings and possibly emergency information. It means exhibitors and managers can create an ambience and interact with the venue’s 3.5 million annual visitors in an entirely new way – via the floor.


    “We are passionate about making the NEC a cutting-edge exhibition space and that means taking advantage of the latest technologies that can enhance the visitor experience,” said Kathryn James, Managing Director of the NEC. “Working with Luminous Carpets technology we have been able to explore new ways of capturing audience’s attention as they enter the venue whilst offering organisers an additional advertising and communication tool.”


    The project is also the first example of an innovative new business model for the technology, which sees Philips Lighting retain ownership of the carpets, while sharing revenues with the NEC from advertising. Exhibitors, sponsors, event organizers and other advertisers can buy slots – or floor-time – with the flexibility to customize content displayed to fit their shows.

    Ed Huibers, Sales and Marketing Director of Luminous Carpets, Philips Lighting, added: “We’re pushing the boundaries of light, taking it beyond illumination. With this project, we’ve created an entirely new way of advertising on the floor of one of the world’s most iconic exhibition centres. This new business model further expands our services portfolio based upon innovative lighting technologies.”


    The lights can be controlled via a web-based application using any internet-enabled device connected to the NEC’s IT network. This allows staff to personalize content displayed on the carpets through pre-programmed “playlists” or on demand at the tap of a smartphone screen or click of a mouse.  The cloud-based content management system even allows the lights to be connected to an external source like a Twitter feed to deliver content in real time.


    Luminous Carpets are made exclusively using high quality carpet from Desso, a Tarkett company and one of the world’s largest flooring manufacturers. The carpets are made using light transmissive material to permit glowing effects, while the highly durable LEDs are specially designed to withstand heavy loads and spills.

    For further information, please contact:

    Philips Lighting

    Jo Picardo

    Tel : +44 (0) 7584508642              



    NEC Birmingham

    Sophia Charalambous

    Tel : +44 (0) 121 767 3214


    About Philips Lighting

    Philips Lighting (Euronext Amsterdam ticker: LIGHT), a global leader in lighting products, systems and services, delivers innovations that unlock business value, providing rich user experiences that help improve lives. Serving professional and consumer markets, we lead the industry in leveraging the Internet of Things to transform homes, buildings and urban spaces. With 2015 sales of EUR 7.5 billion, we have approximately 34,000 employees in over 70 countries. News from Philips Lighting is located at

    About The NEC

    The NEC - where brands are born, products are launched and networks are made - occupies a 610 acre site in the borough of Solihull (just eight miles from Birmingham City Centre) and welcomes around 2.1 million visitors each year to over 500 events.


    The UK’s number one venue offers unrivalled connectivity and flexibility with more than 186,000 square metres of covered exhibition space through 34 conference suites and 20 interconnecting halls, in addition to over 160 acres of hard standing ground and 75 acres of woodland.


    Situated at the heart of the UK’s national motorway network and physically linked to both Birmingham Airport and Birmingham International Railway Station, 75% of the UK’s population are based within a three-hour drive time of the NEC and the venue has over 16,500 car parking spaces for visitors.