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A Sustainable Approach

In Focus
NAME:Ioannis Georgoulis & Ken Fung
LOCATION:Shenzhen, China
Kanion Co founding duo Ioannis Georgoulis and Ken Fung are on a mission to bring affordable, sustainable, technologically advanced air conditioning units to a home near you – without compromising comfort.

Think about that feeling of entering a cool building on a hot summer’s day, or coming home to a warm house on a chilly winter evening. We need to thank people like Ioannis Georgoulis and Ken Fung for their single-minded passion for a product that offers such respite from the heat and the cold – the air conditioning unit.

“Air conditioning is part of my life,” Kanion Co Director Ken Fung tells The CEO Magazine. “The industry is one I’ll never leave, it’s the only job for me.”

A decade ago, he met another appliance addict, Ioannis Georgoulis, whose expertise in the refrigeration industry had been honed working on accounts such as Samsung in his advertising career.

“From the beginning, we have focused on trying to make the latest technological advances in the industry accessible to everyone.”

- Ioannis Georgoulis

Kanion Co, the result of that meeting, isn’t just another air conditioning manufacturer making the crowded home appliance space even more congested, however.

“It’s a road we could have gone down, but we have never focused on the easy profit,” Georgoulis, Kanion Co-CEO, explains. “Instead, from the beginning, we have focused on trying to make the latest technological advances in the industry accessible to everyone.”

The Kanion vision is simple. When someone goes to buy a new air conditioning product and is faced with two choices, the technologically advanced choice and the wallet-friendly choice, the difference in price between the two is such small change that the buyer will automatically go for the former.

A Voice to be Heard

To bring this pioneering vision to life, the duo needed to cast a wide net across the industry and partner with an expansive array of raw materials suppliers and assembly lines. Georgoulis admits that, at the start, when the business was little more than a laptop in a small office in Shenzhen, China, they often struggled to be taken seriously.

A decade on, and their voice is now more easily heard. “There are more people on board with what we say because they can see the impact it can have on the market,” Fung says.

This is, in part, because ‘technologically advanced’ is increasingly becoming synonymous with ‘environmentally friendly’.

“We must protect the earth and ensure that the future is a clean one.”

- Ken Fung

“At the heart of the company is this idea that we can transform every home into a sustainable unit without compromising comfort,” Georgoulis says.

One way the pair is achieving this is by pushing the technological limits of inverter home appliances – units that can regulate the speed of their compressor motors to the point that they consume the least energy imaginable.

Kanion Co’s inverter air conditioning units incorporate smart systems that know when to use cheap power, or the times of the day when power use is much less harmful to the environment. These smart units can, for example, produce hot water during the evening when energy costs less and the planet is cooler, and store it for domestic use later on.

The company is also leading the way in integrating solar technology into their products with a range of solar air conditioning units that allow homes to regulate their energy usage and waste, and diminish the reliance on grid power.

“We will only try to supply and develop the products that are the most advanced in the industry,” Georgoulis affirms.

Its portfolio of products complies with the most rigorous certifications in Europe and the United States, including the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control, the subsidy program of the German Government.

“We can say that every possible energy efficient certification currently available we have met with our products.”

Education Obligation

Befitting its visionary status, Kanion Co has also invested in a global awareness campaign on the correct use of home appliances. Its ‘K-Climate Hub’ initiative is set to launch in early 2024 and is designed to show people how to save energy and money through minimizing the most harmful practices of daily life.

“I feel that, in this industry, we have an obligation to educate people about the products: about what an inverter is, what A+++ energy efficiency means, how to use an energy consumption management app and why it’s so significant not only to our pocket, but also our most precious asset – the earth,” Georgoulis says. “What we do is so critical for the future.”

“What we do is so critical for the future.”

- Ioannis Georgoulis

It’s about making it the most environmentally friendly – and affordable – choice, particularly in regions such as Africa and Middle East, where demand is high but the market hasn’t always provided a high quality yet reasonably priced option.

“It is very important for us as a company,” Fung emphasizes. “We must protect the earth and ensure that the future is a clean one.”

A Cultural Pair

Kanion Co’s main premises are split between two locations: its headquarters in Shenzhen and in Hong Kong. And while these bases may be geographically close to each other, Georgoulis says they both have very unique working styles.

“In Shenzhen, we are cultivating a culture that allows people to extend their talents to learn,” Georgoulis says. “We offer constant and unstoppable education on every level so that people can understand that there is a lot of space to develop inside the company.”

The work environment, he continues, is engaging and relaxed. “We have dinners, we have parties, time when we don’t have to talk about work.”

In Hong Kong, the culture is significantly more fast paced, a reflection of the city itself. “Everything around you travels at the speed of light,” he says. “But the environment is still friendly. And between both teams, there’s no barriers. We are not unknown to each other.”

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