TakaCycle

GreenTech waste collection model and rewards for recycling platform to eliminate the idea of waste for biodiversity in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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Eligibility Criteria

  • I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria and terms of the Act for Biodiversity Challenge and that I am eligible to apply.
  • I am 18 years old or older.

Initiative's representative name

Isack Amini

Initiative's representative date of birth

04 May 1995

Initiative's representative gender

  • Man

Headquarters location: country

  • Tanzania

Headquarters location: city

Dar es Salaam

Where are you making a difference?

SAME

Website or social media url(s)

https://www.takacycle.com/

Date Started

April/2019

Project Stage

  • Growth (have moved past the very first activities; working toward the next level of expansion)

Yearly Budget : What is your current yearly budget for the initiative?

  • €50k - €100k

Organization Type

  • For-profit

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this project to succeed.

With my passion for science, technology and build things up and connect them with the environment, I decided to pursue Architecture since high school. In 2015, I got an opportunity to study Architecture at the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. My first time to live in the city. And one day, my best friend was having severe diarrhea after went to the Hospital, Dr said he got cholera bacterias from contaminated water or food in the streets because of their unhealthy environments. That was the day I decided to focus on environmental solutions that can help my Dar es Salaam city residents. I started to build a team and work on a Green-Tech project to fight the urban waste crisis and teach our community the importance of recycling.

2. The problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

TakaCycle addresses the challenge of the urban waste crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa's fast-growing cities. More than 96% of solid waste is openly dumped and burned while most people experience inefficient solid waste collection, irregular waste pickups and lack of data and education on 3R waste management strategies Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. All of these leads to health problems and diseases such as cholera, Malaria, and an increase of environmental risks such as flooding and climate change threats.

3. Your solution: How are you working to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

Our solution is our smart waste collection model and rewards-for-recycling platform that helps, teach and incentivizes people in low-income communities to capture value from their waste and fight against the urban waste crisis. At TakaCycle, we provide efficient, reliable, affordable, novel and environmentally-friendly waste collection, management and supply of raw materials to the local recycling and manufacturing industries in densely populated urban neighborhoods. We build this platform on a fleet of waste pick-up trucks, big data, and a simple gamified mobile App technology integrated with circular economy concepts. Our collectors pick up recyclable waste from households, commercials, organizations and deliver the materials to our sorting and packaging hubs. As they give materials to us, we reward our customers with points per kg of recycled waste, which they can exchange for rewards i.e Cash, Vouchers, Food, Soft drinks, etc. We turn the organic waste into animal foods and compost manure, which will then sell to animal keepers and farms. The dry recyclables are processed and turned into new products or energy internally or externally through our recycling partners.

4. Innovation: How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solve the problem?

In urban areas, the Internet changes the way we did business. Circular economy and big data and mobile App technologies give us and our customers an opportunity to create and capture values from organic waste and improve soil conditions for farmers by supplying compost manure at affordable prices. TakaCycle simplifies waste collection & management, educate & inform people to reduce, reuse, & recycle for the biodiversity. By envisioning the circular economy of reducing waste in landfills which anaerobically decomposing giving off methane gas, we are turning organic waste to produce compost manure and improve soil conditions, while recyclables are supplied to local recycling and manufacturing industries to create new products or energy

5. Collaboration: How does your initiative seek to bring key players together to preserve biodiversity?

From our research, recycling and manufacturing industries are the largest consumers of organic and recycled raw materials that are recycled from end-of-life products and industrial scrap. In our business model, collaboration with Municipal councils, waste management, and recycling companies is one of the key foundations to preserve biodiversity. By finding a way to capture the economic value of the organic and recyclable waste is at the core of our waste collection model and rewards for recycling platform with and by incorporating more in-house sorting and recycling into the process is one of the easiest ways to reduce a consumers's and manufacturer’s carbon footprint, making both our company, customers and other companies’ product greener. Recently, we have joined TARA Tanzania Waste Recyclers Association and we are in the process of engaging environmental organizations such as UNDP Tanzania, UNEP Tanzania, and Tanzania-NEMC National Environment Management Council.

6. Impact: how has your project made a difference so far — in terms of both business outputs and social impact? How do you plan on measuring progress?

Up to this moment, TakaCycle has interviewed 375 Municipal households and commercials, 7 waste management companies, 17 recyclers, and 4 environmental organizations in 5 different Dar es Salaam Municipal councils. Currently, we are testing our TakaCycle App operation and functionalities (Get it in Google play store), with more than 127 Dar es Salaam city residents users in our private and public beta phase system. All of these people are getting access to education and information on Waste management strategies to reduce, reuse and recycle their waste and fight against urban waste crisis. TakaCycle business model is for Africa fast-growing cities with rapid population growth and high digital penetration with the potential to reach more than 120k+ people within 1 year at full implementation. And create more than 120+ decent jobs for other youth, men, women, and disabled people. Within 5 years, hopefully, we will be in 5 cities, Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Adis Ababa, Kampala, and Nairobi

7. Growth strategies: what are your main strategies for scaling your impact?

We are planning to scale up our innovation to other cities in Tanzania and neighboring countries. Within 5 years, we are targeting 5 Africa fast-growing cities, Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Nairobi, Kampala and Adis Ababa to eliminate the idea of waste for biodiversity and fight against climate change threats in our African fast-growing cities. At TakaCycle, we are diversifying the range of our products and services we offer by using TakaCycle App pay-as-you-go technology from waste collection services to supply of raw materials for recycling to compost manure and animal foods. This will give us access to new markets, and gives our existing customers more to choose from and more reasons to spread the word about our business.

8. Creating shared value: How does your initiative create value for society? Or different stakeholders?

By finding a way to capture the economic value of the waste is at the core of our TakaCycle waste collection model and rewards for recycling platform with our industrial recycling. And by incorporating more in-house sorting and rewards for recycling among urban neighborhoods municipal households, commercials and organizations are one of the easiest ways to reduce a manufacturer’s carbon footprint, making both us, community and other companies’ products greener. We have learned that incorporating a win-win situation in waste collection for biodiversity needs to start with a vision and strategy, accompanied by the company’s culture and its processes in creating shared value for both parties.

9. Financial sustainability plan: can you tell us about your plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

Currently, we fund our venture by our own money through internal cash flow and doing researches, talking with potential customers and developing our prototypes and testing them with our potential customers. Our financial sustainability plan in 2020 is raising one round of Series A to expand and increase our operational efficiency and recruiting new team members. Our Long-term financial sustainability can be achieved only by managing cash flows through sound financial strategies and cost control measures, as we establish a customer base for our products and services and introducing our subscription revenue model and pay-as-you-go technology in our platform.

10. Team: what is the current composition of your current team (types of roles, qualifications, full-time vs. part-time, board members, etc.), and how do you plan to evolve the team’s composition as the project grows?

Our team comprises of 2 full-time co-founders who are passionate about environment, innovation and technology entrepreneurship. We have a mix of different knowledge, skills, and expertise, for example, Isack Amini is a UI/UX Designer with an Architecture background, Ronald Gosso is a full-stack developer with a Computer Science background. Our advisory board made up of national and international business-innovation consultants and green entrepreneurs in Waste management and recycling industry.

11. How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Article in the news

Evaluation results

5 evaluations so far

1. 1) OVERALL EVALUATION

Yes, absolutely! - 80%

Yes/maybe - 20%

Maybe - 0%

Maybe/no - 0%

No - 0%

2. 2) CONNECTION TO BIODIVERSITY

5 —Absolutely! It’s crystal clear how the solution is directly contributing to preserving and/or restoring biodiversity. - 40%

4—Yes, it establishes a clear connection to biodiversity. - 40%

3—Somewhat, the entry speaks to biodiversity but the direct impact is not well established and/or it is focused on a single species without considering its impact on the broader ecosystem - 20%

2—Not really, the connection to biodiversity is weak - 0%

1—No. The entry does not reference the solution’s impact on biodiversity. - 0%

3. 3) Is this entry IMPACTFUL?

5 -Yes, absolutely! - 40%

4- Yes, I think so. - 60%

3- Maybe. - 0%

2- Probably not. - 0%

1- No. - 0%

4. 4) Is this entry INNOVATIVE?

5 -Yes, absolutely! - 40%

4- Yes, I think so. - 60%

3- Maybe. - 0%

2- Probably not. - 0%

1- No. - 0%

5. 5) Is this entry VIABLE financially and operationally?

5 -Yes, absolutely! - 20%

4- Yes, I think so. - 40%

3- Maybe. - 40%

2- Probably not. - 0%

1- No. - 0%

6. 6) Is this entry ACTIVATING CHANGEMAKING?

5 -Yes, absolutely! - 60%

4- Yes, I think so. - 40%

3- Maybe. - 0%

2- Probably not. - 0%

1- No. - 0%

7. 7) Does this entry value COLLABORATION WITH OTHER STAKEHOLDERS in its approach?

5- Yes, absolutely! - 40%

4- Yes, I think ko. - 60%

3- Maybe. - 0%

2- Probably not. - 0%

1- No. - 0%

8. 8) FEEDBACK – Highlights

INNOVATION: You have a great understanding of the problem, have researched existing solutions, and have developed unique, thoughtful new solutions - 80%

IMPACT: You use specific numbers and evidence to describe what your project has achieved so far (or plan to achieve in the future) and you have a plan for measuring impact - 80%

GROWTH & LEADERSHIP POTENTIAL: You have a thoughtful plan for growth and your founding team has a strong combination of leadership and knowledge-based skills - 60%

VIABIBLITY: You have given a great deal of thought to not just the idea itself but how to make it work from a financial perspective in the present and future - 20%

CHANGEMAKING ACTIVATION: You value thinking around how to activate changemakers and empower them to innovate through your product or programming - 100%

POTENTIAL TO CREATE SHARED VALUE: You have a clearly defined plan on how to maximize shared value across multiple sectors and stakeholders - 60%

WRITING STYLE: Your writing style is concise, descriptive, clear, and specific - 20%

Other option - 0%

9. 9) FEEDBACK - Areas for Improvement

INNOVATION: Be more specific in your description of the research you have done into the past solutions to this problem and focus on how your solution is unique and innovative - 25%

IMPACT: Provide specific instances of your social impact and how you plan to measure impact – it may be helpful to describe the beneficiaries, products and programming, and provide evidence of (or plan for) how to measure impact - 50%

GROWTH & LEADERSHIP POTENTIAL: Your plan for growing the organization can benefit from more specifics. How can you round out the various skills of your current leadership team to make the project a long-term success? - 25%

VIABILITY: Make sure you have provided descriptive information about your financial sustainability plan. Where do the funds come from now and do you have a concrete plan for future sustainability? - 100%

POTENTIAL TO CREATE SHARED VALUE: your plan can benefit from more thought on how to create value for all stakeholders, not just immediate beneficiaries - 50%

WRITING STYLE: Try to be more concise, descriptive, clear, and specific. Avoid jargon. - 50%

Nothing – I thought everything was great! - 25%

CHANGEMAKING ACTIVATION: Try to provide more insights into how you are activating changemakers and empowering them to innovate through your product or programming - 0%

Other option - 0%

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