Whelen Acquires LoPresti Aviation

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Whelen Engineering, the well-known manufacturer of aircraft lamps and strobe lights, announced Friday that is has acquired LoPresti Aviation, another manufacturer of aircraft lighting systems and aircraft mods. The new entity, to be called Whelen Aerospace Technologies or WAT, will be based in Chester, Connecticut, Whelen Engineering’s long-established home. Whelen also has an extensive line of automotive lighting products.

Included in the deal is LoPresti’s speed mod business, its HID lighting line and a new division it established recently to market its own line of LED landing and taxi lamps. LoPresti pioneered HID lighting for light aircraft with its Boom Beam product. Over the years, it expanded that line into ever-larger aircraft, including turboprops and business jets. As cheaper LEDs eroded the HID market, LoPresti branched into that technology as well, with the Illumivation line.

LoPresti is also known for its speed mods for Pipers, Mooneys and other aircraft. These include cowls, spats and gap seals. It recently introduced a brake cooling mod for the Cirrus called Ice Skates. That business will continue and it, along with the LoPresti lighting division, will remain in Florida. For now, the WAT website shows three nameplates: Whelen, Illumivation and LoPresti Aviation. The Illumivation line will eventually roll into Whelen’s Parmetheus aircraft lighting line.

Whelan president and CEO George Whelan says the combined resources of the two companies will allow WAT to expand its product line and better serve customers globally. Our sister publication, The Aviation Consumer, will publish a detailed review on LED lighting in the March 2019 issue.