Cleantech solutions: Waste management gets cloud treatment

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August 27, 2020 2:00 AM

Recykal connects waste generators, aggregators and recyclers on its cloud-based digital platform

Abhishek DeshpandeAbhishek Deshpande

Rapid urbanisation across the country has led to a huge waste management challenge. The waste management industry is dominated by the informal sector where transactions are offline and undocumented. The stakeholders work in their own silos with little information or communication. In short, chaos reigns supreme. The need of the hour is innovative, reliable, scalable technologies and that’s where Recykal comes in— a digital technology venture that is “bringing digital revolution to waste management and recycling by creating transparent, traceable material loops,” says the company’s co-founder, Abhishek Deshpande.

Recykal is building one-of-its-kind formal recycling systems for post-consumer and post-industrial recyclable waste such as plastic, paper, cardboard, e-waste, metal, glass and textile, thus empowering the not-so-visible waste collectors in the process. It has built cloud solutions, mobile applications for stakeholders across the waste value chain.

The Recykal marketplace enables transactions between waste generators, waste aggregators, recyclers, co-processors, says Deshpande. A smart centre is used by collection centres, waste management companies to digitise their day-to-day operations and give complete visibility of material flow. Recykal’s customer platform helps consumers channelise plastics, e-waste to registered recyclers and get incentives. Recently, it announced a pan-India partnership with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages for Project Prithvi, a joint initiative for developing sustainable plastic waste management practices in the country.

The cloud-based, full-service technology platform focuses on buying and selling recyclables, connecting recyclable waste generators such as customers, businesses, manufacturers and waste collectors with a network of recyclers who are facing a shortage of reliable supply in this informal industry. As per EY-Assocham report, India generated 62 million metric tonne of solid waste in 2016. Out of this 9.46 million tonne is plastic waste, two million metric tonne is e-waste. E-waste generation is expected to reach five million metric tonne in 2020.

“We are expanding our operational footprints across India and building a strong product pipeline for brands to manage their EPR (extended producer responsibility) fulfillment. We will work with 20-odd municipal corporations, Smart Cities in digitising their waste disposal operations, helping them channelise plastic wastes from collection centres to recyclers and co-processors,” says Deshpande. Recykal raised pre-Series A funding of $2 million in 2019 from Triton Invest-ment Advisors and the family office of Ajay Parekh, a wholetime director of Pidilite Industries. It had raised $1 million earlier from angel investors.

By connecting the various stakeholders such as generators (households, businesses, manufacturing facilities, schools/other institutions), processors (waste pickers, collection centres, kabadiwalas, municipal bodies, etc.,) and recyclers, Recykal provides end-to-end technology for brands to comply with EPR norms, shifting responsibility from consumers to large producer brands to collect used and end-of-life materials from consumers. The client list includes Aditya Birla Group, Accor Hotels, Westside, Big Basket, Maruti Suzuki, Honda, Spar Supermarkets and Banyan Nation among others.

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