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OUR TEAM

Dr. Juha Rantala

Chairman of the Board

Dr. Rantala is an international semiconductor entrepreneur and executive with 20 years experience in semiconductor, optoelectronics materials and components development, manufacturing and sales as a CTO, CEO and investor. Currently Dr. Rantala actively operates in semiconductor materials and components development, manufacturing and IP acquisition businesses with a tier-1 client base in APAC and with their OEM and brand owners in Europe and the U. S.

Dr. Rantala is an internationally recognized semiconductor entrepreneur and executive with over 20 years of experience in semiconductor, optoelectronics materials and components development, manufacturing and sales as a CTO, CEO and investor. Currently Dr. Rantala actively operates in semiconductor materials and components development, manufacturing and IP acquisition businesses with a tier-1 client base in APAC, Europe, USA including their OEM and brand owners globally.

In addition to be the Chairman in illumiPure Juha is as a CEO of Inkron Limited and also the founder of PiBond Limited. He started his professional career at VTT in 1996 and served there at various leadership positions mainly related to electronics packaging and optoelectronics materials. In the late 90ies he worked at Optical Sciences Center of the University of Arizona in development of optical material and components. For the last 15 years he has been an entrepreneur in various technology companies including PiBond, Inkron, Lumichip and Silecs. Moreover he has co-founded and seed funded businesses in semiconductors, optoelectronics and material sciences industries. His tenures also include academic faculty roles in USA and Finland. He has published more than 70 scientific and technical articles, authored 3 technical editorials and contributed as an inventor to create over 100 patents. During his professional career he has operated internationally including living nearly 10 years in Asia and currently he resides in Switzerland and Hong Kong.

Dr. Juha Rantala

John C. Higgins

President / CEO

John C. Higgins

Mr. Higgins has built a reputation as a powerful leader and business driver with an endless and contagious passion for innovation, quality, and growth. Leveraging those core values and his entrepreneurial drive, Mr. Higgins led NEUTEX Advanced Energy Group & NEUTEX LED Lighting to breakthrough innovations in the LED Lighting Industry. Sharp business management skills honed from over 25 years of executive level experience has allowed Mr. Higgins to leverage his knowledge of the construction and manufacturing markets into the production and distribution of NEUTEX Lighting products throughout a large network of developers, project managers and construction companies.

John secured his first SBA loan at the age of 16; a loan that would be the catalyst for a career in business development, leadership, manufacturing and quality control. The loan funded the opening of a stained glass store where he became certified and known as a Master Glass Beveller. John expanded operations quickly to manufacture door windows and windows for builders like Mitchell Development, Kimball Hill Homes, Conroe Door and end users throughout Texas.

John returned to Houston to guide his family owned land management company, BullDog Logging, after a successful career with American Creditors Bureau in Dallas and Washington D.C. After recognizing the waste from logging John created another division called BullDog Environmental; services included environmental grinding, green waste disposal and the manufacturing of large volume mulch operations.

Upon mastering the business of logging, land clearing and soil preparation, he evolved into a commercial construction business forming J.C. Higgins Construction where he completed General Contractor work for clients including Holiday Inn, Candlewood Suites, Grubb and Ellis, CREG Real Estate and Center Real Estate. John’s passion for understanding every element of construction and emerging construction technology led him to invest in a company that manufactured Compact Fluorescent (CFL) and Induction lighting components for commercial applications. This start up proved to be a poor investment but true to his genuine nature, relationships with China suppliers and other international partners remained and would eventually be the basis of NEUTEX Lighting.

Not to be stung again with investing in a technology past it’s prime (as was CFL), John researched, developed and planned for the launch of an LED company that would offer a product offering that the end user actually desired instead of one they were forced to use. Hiring a talented team of professionals around him with experience in finance, R&D, public relations, sales and marketing allowed him to keep everything 'in-house' and attend to all aspects of QC from supply chain, to materials, manufacturing and even brand development.

Partners like Lumichip, under the direction of Dr. Juha Rantala, developed and would help guide the decisions for developing more efficient robotics to manufacture PCB’s for LED lighting and creating economies with suppliers. In addition, the NEUTEX Brand had been in development for 2 years. This brand is recognized globally as a future leader in LED. Brand recognition on the Diane Sawyer “Made in America” segment was the catalyst for the interest from investors and potential customers.

Mark E. Sam

CFO

Mark has 36 years of financial experience as a CPA in both private and public accounting. He has worked with companies of all sizes across several industries, including manufacturing, retail sales, wholesale distributors, importers and commercial real estate. His years auditing, management consulting, and work as a corporate controller for local CPA firm. Mark reports all accounting, treasury management and financial matters to ILP’s Board of Directors and sets the company-wide financial objectives, policies, procedures, programs and practices.

Mark E. Sam

Mark C. Lewis

COO

Mark C. Lewis

Mark has held various sales, management and leadership positions across several industries, including executive search, transportation, investor relations, and non-profit organizations. A 20-year veteran of sales and marketing, Mark has experience in building partnerships, sales channels, and sales teams for a wide variety of organizations. Mark is responsible for ILP’s new business development, strategic planning, and community and client relations efforts.

James J. Higgins

NTX Labs President

Mr. James Higgins has over 35 years experience in the field of electronics, including complex circuit engineering design and repair, research & development, invention of new LEDproducts and assisting with the advancements of LED technologies. As President of NTX Labs, his focus is on testing and enhancement of existing LED technologies and development of new LED technologies and fixtures.

James J. Higgins

Neil McDougall

Board Member

Neil McDougall

Neil is currently Vice President Channel Sales & Marketing for Johnson Controls. Prior to joining Johnson Controls in 2016, McDougall was Global Sales Director for Caterpillar Inc. With more than 20 years in marketing leadership Neil has held senior positions with accountability to develop and execute sales, distribution and channel effectiveness strategies in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and across North America.

McDougall holds a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and a Post Graduate in Business Management

Other directorships within the last five years: Caterpillar (NI) Ltd.

Yu-Chung Wang

Chief Semiconductor Packaging Engineer

Mr. Wang directs R&D, product design and manufacturing at illumiPure. His responsibilities include management of operations and production of illumiPure’s cleanroom facility in Houston, TX. Mr. Wang carries out research into novel LED component manufacturing technologies and processes as well as materials sourcing. Mr. Wang’s experience spans 15 years in managing volume driven manufacturing plants across a number of industries, including automotive and architectural lighting. He has extensive knowledge of electronics assembly and packaging, extractive manufacturing molding processes and technology.

Yu-Chung Wang
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