Maybe its my imagination but it seems everywhere I go I see LED billboards these days--more and more. Don't know how many are Daktronics but I suspect many are. It is the wave of the future. And you hardly hear from those morons anymore who were trying to curtail LED billboards because of the supposed distraction.
Hopefully with tomorrow's call we'll see excitement over the digital billboard market continue to grow. Lamar (LAMR) said at their Nov 4 CC that they had recently placed orders for digital boards for the first time in two years. As you will recall, LAMR was DAKT's biggest billboard customer prior to the financial crisis.
They intend to spend $50M on 280 to 300 digital boards in 2011, half poster sized and half bulletin sized. The larger bulletin sized boards will be one-third junior bulletins (10.5 ft x 30 ft) and two-thirds full size (14 ft x 48 ft). LAMR gave their total per-board costs, including taxes and installation as
poster: $112k junior bulletin: $163k full size bulletin: $245k
As before the crisis, new orders will be split between Yesco and DAKT. LAMR management was very complimentary of both Yesco and DAKT on the call, saying "Those two guys have done an incredible job, lowering price, improving performance, improving useful life, operating costs, just across the board they have been great partners." However, they mentioned they are in preliminary talks with a third provider, Barco, although they do not anticipate that they will give them any significant business, if any at all, in 2011.
I believe its just beginning. I think we will soon see LED signs showing up on buildings instead of the ones weve gotten so used to. Imagine a Walmart or McDonalds deciding to retrofit stores with new LED display signage. Think of the eye appeal with a sign like this. Im actually surprised this hasnt been done yet and I hope Dak is on it.