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    Date submitted
  • 28-Sep-2017

WeGreen

Abstract

Nigeria is faced with the problems of Waste Management and Education. With population of 182.2 million (over 300 million by 2050 – UN) it is estimated that the country has about 10.5 million out-of-school children (Unicef) and generates over 65 million tons of waste daily while it possesses less than 10% waste management capacity. WeGreen, is a for profit social and waste management enterprise with a mission for keeping students in schools through solid waste recycling. The startup is set to be located in Ibadan and will deal in collection, sorting, baling/grinding of plastic, paper and metal wastes; which will be sold to large scale recycling plants, plastic manufacturers, paper mills, aluminum smelting plants, material packaging companies, exporters and more. We project an initial processing capacity of 500tons of waste yearly in our facility with an estimated $116,825 in sales. In line with our company’s commitment to “keeping a child in school”, we will initiate a community called TACTOF (Teach a Child to Fish) that emphasizes & urge our waste contributors and supporters to collect and donate recyclable solid waste for free. We also plan to commit a fraction of our quarterly or yearly profit to our education development cause which seeks to keep children in school by creating conducive learning environment that will ensure quality education in our local communities.

Our business model thrives strongly on societal inclusion (households, corporate bodies, student/youth and commercial registered or informal waste collectors) and participation for collection of recyclables which provides some level of income for low income households.

Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

We classify our target market for recyclable collectors/suppliers as individuals or entity who collect or supply us with plastic, paper or aluminum waste materials. This individuals or entity may be waste scavengers, registered low income or high income households, commercial waste collectors, cooperate organizations, institutions and event centers; while our target market for Recyclable Re-converters include processing, manufacturing or smelting companies that we supply sorted, bailed, grinded or palletized waste materials for upward recycling purpose this include large scale recycling plants, plastic manufacturers, aluminum smelters and paper processing mills, textile companies, chemical manufacturers, food and drink processing companies and other allied companies in the five local government areas close to our operating location.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

Target companies suffer shortage in waste feedstock supply. In a recent survey project carried out by World Bank, it is reported that the plastic recycling facilities in the country currently operate within 40% to 60% below capacity due to shortage in supply of post-consumer plastic. Furthermore, there is the problem of energy which accounts for 30% of primary aluminum production costs, but by recycling of aluminum scrap, aluminum smelting firm only 5% of energy. This drives the high demand for aluminum waste materials as opposed to mining aluminum ore in the country. However, aluminum smelters are unable to benefit to a reasonable extent the energy and cost efficiency of recycling due to shortage in supply of aluminum waste. Same applies to paper mills, producing recycled paper uses 50% less energy, 50% less water and fewer chemical processes than virgin paper.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

Existing waste collection innovations in the country are solely based on cash incentive system (where cash rewards are given for collection of waste), this has led to majority of membership signups coming from low income households while leaving out the involvement of the middle and high income class who generate the greater percentage of wastes and do not necessarily care about cash incentives. We have employed a business model that carries along every category of people in the society. This model affords our target audience an option to either “collect waste for cash incentives or collect waste for impact (keep a child in school)”. This provides a source of income for the low income households who desire cash incentives for waste supply and fulfillment for individuals who wish to donate waste to keep a child in school.

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

We are team of young entrepreneurs that comprises of personality profiles that reflect the synergies of a highly motivated, experienced and well qualified individuals with proven business start-up skills. The team is led by Taiwo T.J, a Petroleum engineer & marketing strategist and co-founder at Ruby&Belle; Omitogun Abolaji a business development service personnel & Alumnus of The Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Foundation. Bello I.B. (ACA) a chartered accountant with experience in continuous management of financial systems, audits, budgets and risk analysis. The recycling industry is relatively new in Nigeria and still at the infant stage. Nevertheless, there is enough market for new entrants “WeGreen” to service. Top leaders in the recycling market that offer similar services include Wecyclers, RecycleNG and Recycle Point. This brands have a well-established offices in Lagos and Ogun state region with small non-functioning branches in Ibadan. However, this recycling companies are at a distance very far away (136.26 km) from Ibadan where our facility will reside. WeGreen will be taking the first mover advantage as it is going to be the first significant recycling company to be established in the recycling market in Ibadan.