Government and companies embrace circular telecom

14 February 2019

Today, during our ‘Collaborating for Circularity’ event, we celebrate the arrival of 350,000 scrap phones from Cameroon and help Dutch public and private actors achieve their circular ambitions. Together with State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management, Mrs. Stientje van Veldhoven, and under the guidance of Circular Expert Guido Braam, we discussed the exciting business opportunities of a circular telecom industry.

Alderman Marja Ruigrok from the Municipality of Haarlemmermeer welcomed all the participants in the circular hotspot C-bèta. For everyone it is clear that circularity is hot. Participants discussed that it’s not just a hype, it’s a necessity. Valuable resources should not be wasted, but we need effective and exciting business models to close loops. As one of the Netherlands’ innovators in the Circular Economy, and current holder of the Circular Award, Closing the Loop is making the mobile industry more circular.

One of our customers is T-Mobile Netherlands, which compensates a total of 25,000 phones. Closing the Loop makes these phones waste-free by collecting scrap phones from emerging markets, such as Cameroon, and recycling them. "What we see is that business customers buy more and more sustainably. They also increasingly demand this from their suppliers. The development of programs such as the Recycle Deal, in collaboration with Closing the Loop, are in line with this and result in profit for the environment, consumer and business market", says Léon Toet, Chief Commercial Officer Business at T-Mobile Netherlands.

"We need a long term vision and short term action on circular economy," said State Secretary Stientje van Veldhoven in her speech. "Tackling e-waste, preventing environmental pollution and re-using raw materials. From an old cell phone, to beautiful new jewellery, Closing the Loop shows that it is possible!"

Are you interested to know more about how the phones where collected? Check out our behind the scenes.