FRN issued the following press release on 10th December 2007:
Dixons Stores Group, DHL and the FRN join forces for the benefit of re-users and retailers
A major new WEEE (waste electronics and electrical equipment) alliance between the UK’s largest electrical retailer, the world’s largest logistics company and the UK’s social economy re-use sector has been launched to increase the amount of discarded electrical items that are reused.
Dixons Stores Group (DSGi) and DHL have agreed an alliance with FRN (Furniture Re-use Network) for the reuse of WEEE collected by DSGi’s nationwide “takeback-on-delivery” service. Each of DSGi’s 14 regional distribution centres across the UK are now partnered with an Approved Re-use Centre (ARC) through FRN Enterprises Ltd (FRN’s trading subsidiary) and each centre is reusing between 70 and 200 WEEE items per week. The arrangement will result in more than 100,000 electrical items a year being reused.
DSGi and DHL have taken this step to encourage re-use. Sarah Geddes Operations Director for Group Reverse Logistics of DSGi said:
“Since the introduction of the WEEE legislation in July, we have been keen to play an active role in encouraging customers to recycle their old electrical items responsibly. The formation of this alliance is important as it enables us to encourage reuse and enhance the good reputation of the Dixons Group.”
DSGi delivery staff will in future ask customers whether the product they are replacing is still functional and if so they will inform customers that the item will be reused by the local FRN organisation for social benefit. Labelling of these items will allow the distribution site staff to sort the returned items (refrigeration, cookers, washers and TVs) into items that that can be diverted for re-use and those to be sent for recycling. FRN’s 14 Approved Re-use Centres will collect reusable WEEE from DSGi’s Home Delivery sites.
Sarah Geddes stated that: “This type of service is a great way of demonstrating our company’s real commitment to the environment and shows that we take issues of corporate and social responsibility very seriously. This approach enables DSGi to play our part as a responsible high street retailer and also to help our customers who often want to do the right thing when it comes to caring for the planet.”
DHL is the logistics provider to DSGi and manages the WEEE collection and recycling service for the group. Sean Hodges, Head of Environmental Solutions at DHL said:
“What’s so exciting about this project is how it shows that benefiting local communities and delivering real corporate responsibility need not be costly. By utilizing the existing supply chain infrastructure, we have been able to implement an efficient reverse logistics solution that is environmentally friendly in terms of reduced road miles, fuel use and emissions.”
Craig Anderson of FRN Enterprises Ltd said:
“We see this as a strong endorsement of our members’ services by both DSGi and DHL; since July we have worked together to design and implement a mutually agreeable re-use service that involves the commitment and action of all parties. This type of structured approach is maximising the amount of electrical and electronic appliances that can be reused through a nationally prescribed agreement dovetailing with local relations between site operators and reusers”.
“We estimate that this partnership will generate at least 100,000 quality assured appliances a year for our members to distribute to the UK’s excluded consumers. As the FRN membership is supplying to people who cannot afford to purchase new items, re-use through our sector avoids any competition with new sales and therefore compliments the work of Dixons Stores Group whilst helping the company achieve WEEE compliance in partnership with DHL.”.
Through FRN Enterprises, the FRN has developed a nationwide re-use and logistics network of certified facilities known as ARCs. These sites offer a “hub & spoke” infrastructure to aid collection, sortation, bulking up and onward transportation of WEEE while centralising repair and re-use capacity for distribution to the wider re-use sector.