United States – US firm GRC Wireless has recycled 7 million mobile phones since its launch 15 years ago. This anniversary year, the company celebrates that 20 000 organisations are participating in its various take-back schemes, earning the parties involved ‘millions of dollars’.
GRC Wireless was founded in 2002 by wireless industry veterans Marc Leff and Henry Garcia. Both founders were involved in the wireless industry since its infancy in the late 1980s, and started looking into phone recycling when they saw the rapidly growing stream of post-consumer handhelds.
‘Our 15 year motto has been ”We Transform Environmental Challenge into Great Opportunity”. We believe in this principle now more than ever,’ comments company president Marc Leff.
‘We began our journey servicing the recycling needs of domestic violence shelters through our Shelter Alliance program,’ recalls the company’s chairman Henry Garcia. ‘We made it simple and profitable for shelters to recycle donated phones. Over 85% of North American shelters participated in our programme, and we helped raise tens of millions of dollars for domestic violence prevention and shelter services,’ he adds.
GRC’s services includes recycling programmes such as SmartphoneRecycling.com, OperationRecycling.com and SmartphoneTradeIn.com – the first of which has become ‘the largest bulk smartphone recycling programme in the United States’, according to Leff.
For every phone donated to OperationRecycling.com, GRC Wireless contributes up to US $200 to Operation Gratitude, a charity that provides over 200 000 care packages filled with food, entertainment as well as hygiene products etc. to veterans, first responders, new recruits, wounded heroes, and families waiting at home.
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