British consumer co-operative group Co-op has expanded its technology recirculation trial for electronic devices with start-up company Spring.
Launched in October last year, the partnership involves installing Spring’s self-service Pods at Co-op stores.
The Pods allow consumers to deposit their reusable and recyclable electronic devices in exchange for cash, thereby reducing e-waste.
Initially available at 20 of Co-op’s convenience stores across London, the pilot has now been rolled out to selected Co-op stores in Birmingham, Brighton, Leeds and Manchester.
Co-op innovation and format director Mark Matthews said: “Co-op’s partnership with Spring will enable more communities to recycle or reuse their electronic devices locally, unlocking the value in forgotten phones and other unwanted tech and, importantly, preventing unnecessary and avoidable e-waste.
“If we are going to have a natural environment which we are proud to pass on to future generations we need action to be taken now.
“By making it easier for consumers to make small changes to their everyday lives, together, it can add up to make a big difference for our environment.”
Spring’s kiosk-style Pods accept nearly 14,000 different devices such as phones, tablets, e-readers and smartwatches.
Customers will receive payments to their Spring account within one to three days.
Spring repairs, refurbishes or reuses the collected devices, as well as recycling components such as gold, copper, aluminium and steel from devices that cannot be reused.
Spring co-founder Tom Williams said: “Spring, together with Co-op, are making it easy for people to recirculate unwanted tech, which not only puts money in their pockets but also has a positive impact on the environment.
“We’ve already made a huge impact with our first pods in London and we’re excited to bring this to more local communities.”
In May this year, Co-op announced it was testing an external service hatch at its store on Lewes Road in Brighton, UK.