Green VC

News & resources for social entrepreneurs

Category: Recycling

SDForum Presents Program on Waste Management and Recycling on May 3 (Discount Available)

SDForumOn May 3, SDForum will present the next program in its Clean and Green Evening Series entitled Waste Management and Recycling.  A summary of this program is:

As waste management has intensified the global environmental impact and creates financial costs, a perfect storm is created for technology innovation. SDForum is partnering with Orrick to bring you a dynamic discussion of emerging waste mitigation companies, socially responsible venture investment firms, and local public services as they address building sustainable and environmentally compatible products for full life cycle and highlight the lifecycle of consumer waste management, treatment, recovery and containment.

This program will feature the following panelists:

  • Nick Drobac, The Clean Oceans Project
  • Annie Hazlehurst, Draper Fisher Jurvetson
  • Jim Holm, ENergy
  • Patrick Mathews, Salinas Valley Solid Waste Authority
  • Haider Nazar, Verliant
  • Moderated by: Mitch Zuklie, Orrick

This program will be held from 6:00 - 8:30 pm at Orrick, 1100 Marsh Road, Menlo Park, CA.  Thanks to our friends at SDForum, readers of Green VC can receive a $5 discount from the non-member registration price for this event.  To receive the discount, please use code "GREEN05" when registering online.

RecycleBank Launches in Additional U.S. Locations

RecycleBank, a Philadelphia-based company that provides financial benefits for households to recycle, today announced it is expanding its service into the following locations:

  • Montgomery, Ohio
  • Sioux Falls, South Dakota
  • Eden Prairie and Maple Grove, Minnesota
  • Carrollton and Plano, Texas
  • North Miami, Florida
  • Wichita, Kansas
  • Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Knoxville, Tennessee

Green VC first covered RecycleBank earlier this year, when the company raised a $30 million round of funding.

"This is an incredibly exciting time in our company's history," said CEO and co-founder of RecycleBank, Ron Gonen. "The value we are creating in the municipalities we service is fueling tremendous demand for our program."

According to the company, RecycleBank households have saved over 559,475 trees, over 37 million gallons of oil, over 200 million gallons of water; and successfully diverted more than 59,946 tons of waste from landfills.  The video below provides a brief overview of RecycleBank:

RecycleBank also announced that in honor of America Recycles Day (November 15th), it will launch The Cycle, an animated interactive look at the process of single stream recycling and materials reprocessing.

For more information:

Flipswap Receives $14 Million in Series B Financing


Flipswap, a Los Angeles-based mobile phone and iPod trade-in and recycling company, announced today that it has obtained $14 million in a Series B financing round from RRE Ventures and NGEN Partners

Flipswap was founded in 2005 and enables consumers to trade in their mobile phone or Apple iPod and obtain cash, make a donation, or receive credit for a new device.  The company also provides a variety of merchant services to brick and mortar stores, websites, and non-profit organizations.  Since Flipswap’s launch in 2005, consumers have provided Flipswap with more than 700,000 devices.  According to the company, in 2007 it placed enough mobile phones back into circulation to keep the equivalent of 50 tons of solid waste out of U.S. landfills.

“We saw a novel way to apply incentive principles to worldwide challenges of electronic waste. It’s an important mission,” says Sohrob Farudi, CEO of Flipswap. “We are fortunate to have found strong and forward thinking partners; it’s a huge vote of confidence for Flipswap to be recognized as an innovator with the backing of two leading firms during these tough economic times.”

“Flipswap is directly tackling issues of electronic waste and environmental sustainability through a highly scalable business model,” said Rosemary Ripley, managing director with NGEN. “With this investment we see significant opportunities to grow the Flipswap brand, platform and distribution footprint.”

“We were impressed with Flipswap’s innovative business approach to this growing global challenge, as well as their ability to execute and build momentum despite market conditions,” said Harsh Patel, venture partner with RRE Ventures. “We are delighted to support companies committed to positive environmental impact through entrepreneurship.” 

For more information:

ReCellular Receives $15 Million in Series A Financing


Earlier this month, ReCellular, a cell-phone recycling firm  with headquarters in Dexter, Michigan, announced that Investor Growth Capital (IGC) invested $15 million in a Series A Preferred Stock financing. In connection with this investment, Noah Walley and Albert Kim will join ReCellular’s board of directors.  IGC is the wholly-owned venture capital group of Sweden-based Investor AB.

"Our goal was to develop a profitable company that was socially and environmentally responsible," said ReCellular CEO Chuck Newman. "Through the dedication of a talented team of people, ReCellular has exceeded all expectations. With IGC’s support and investment, we will dramatically expand the company and set the standard for success in electronics-sustainability and clean-tech operations."

According to the company, its growth plans include:

  • Expanding operations, opening new office facilities, consolidating processing facilities, and significantly increasing the number of Michigan employees
  • Rapidly increasing phone collections, focusing on direct-to-consumer and trade-in partnerships, and building consumer awareness of the benefits of cell phone recycling
  • Evaluating strategic acquisitions of other electronics recycling businesses that could complement ReCellular’s expertise and operations

"We processed almost 5,000 phones in our first year of business," said Newman. "Today, we get an average of 24,000 phones – enough to fill seven mail trucks – every day, five days a week. With the support and resources of IGC, we see the potential to double the number of mail trucks delivering to ReCellular in the very near future."

"We see tremendous growth potential in ReCellular," says Albert Kim, Vice President of IGC. "They have revolutionized the electronics-sustainability industry by providing a convenient solution for consumers to recycle their used handsets, while at the same time extracting enough value from these phones to build a successful business. We have investigated many clean-tech companies, including many in the cell phone recycling arena, and we felt that ReCellular was clearly the world’s most promising cell phone reuse and recycling firm."

For more information:

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