Recycl3R closes funding round with Swedish company Billerudkorsnäs

The Spanish company recycl3R, who took part in EIT Climate-KIC Spain’s Accelerator programme in 2017 and have developed a digital solution to increase recycling and making it smoother for consumers has closed a funding round with Sweden’s BillerudKorsnäs (BK), a world leader in the marketing of packaging made from sustainable materials (paper and cardboard).

The investment is made by the subsidiary BillerudKorsnäs Venture AB which invests in young and innovative companies with solutions that will influence the future for packaging.

“The Swedish company has acquired a minority stake in the company but is also a strategic partner due to its knowledge of the sector and access to the market,” says Iván González, CEO of recycl3R. “We got not only a powerful investor, but we also acquired a strategic partner that will accompany us in our growth”, explains.

What part of the product goes in what recycling bin and where is your closest recycling station? With the use of a white label app and recycl3R’s recycling and packaging database (launched with the support of BillerudKorsnäs) it will be possible to engage with consumers and getting information on how to separate and sort all kinds of packaging.

Recycl3R has built a database with information about what packaging material different consumer products consist of. They also integrate the different recycling regulations and requirements around the world. This knowledge is used to guide consumers to the nearest recycling station and help them recycle correctly. The solution also makes it possible for producers and distributors to give consumers incentive to recycle more thanks to the gamification and rewarding of the recycling of the waste items.

This digital solution created to improve recycling has been integrated by Carrefour, its first customer, through the app https://reciclaya.app/.  For Iván González, this has generated a lot of “visibility and success” for his start-up. Thanks to this collaboration they have appeared in more than 300 media, have achieved in less than 5 months more than 7,000 users (about 2,000 active per day) who have recycled more than 1 million containers, thus avoiding the emission of about 24 tons of CO2 equivalent. 

This campaign, developed for Carrefour, has the active participation of leading companies in the sector such as Calidad Pascual, Campofrio, Central Lechera Asturiana, Coca Cola, Colgate Palmolive, Danone, Mahou San Miguel, Mars, Mondelēz, Nestlé, PepsiCo, P&G, Pulevaand Unilever.

Since its creation, recycl3R has obtained some awards and recognitions: best social economy project of 2018 in PalmaActiva; third prize in the IoT Week 2018; prize to the best application in Appcircus Stuttgart 2016; and were one of the startups selected for IoTStars 2018, WebSummit 2017, Nitro 2017 and Startup4cities 2015.

This new collaboration with one of the world’s leading companies in the packaging sector will allow the Spanish startup recycl3R to create the basis for achieving international expansion and the scalability necessary to become a world reference in applying technology to packaging recycling.

A shared perspective

The main motive behind this alliance has been the shared vision to solve one of today’s challenges: the amount of waste generated by product packaging. “Packaging recycling is an area that we believe will be increasingly important in order to solve the environmental challenges ahead. Sustainability and digitalization connected to packaging are strategic focus-areas for BillerudKorsnäs Venture, and recycl3R presents a very interesting opportunity based on their combined expertise in both areas.” says Martin Neselius, Venture Manager at BillerudKorsnäs Venture.

Waste production is one of the largest environmental problems that society faces today, and solving it is a big challenge. In Europe, alone we produce 240 million tons of waste, and only 44% is recycled. BillerudKorsnäs shares our vision of solving this global challenge and is an excellent partner and investor for recycl3R.” says Iván González.

 
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