M.Video-Eldorado Group, Russia’s leading e-commerce and consumer electronics retailer (MOEX: MVID), sums up the 2021 results of in-house electronic waste recycling programs and other environmental initiatives as part of its ESG strategy. In 2021, the volume of electronics (received from customers and the Company) and batteries sent for recycling increased 1.5-fold to almost 1,550 tons. M.Video-Eldorado also launched a number of projects to reduce its environmental footprint, including initiatives to collect packaging and secondary materials, sort waste, install reverse vending machines for collecting aluminum cans and plastic bottles, and recycle metallic elements of retail equipment that have become obsolete and are no longer used.
Circular economy programs are expanding and becoming increasingly popular. For over two years, M.Video-Eldorado Group has been implementing ongoing programs in its stores across Russia to collect and properly recycle electronics. Supported by the Electronics Recycling Association, the scheme enables consumers to dispose of all types of used electronics in any condition. A similar arrangement for used batteries is running in partnership with Duracell. These projects that are transparent for all stakeholders aim to reduce hazardous waste in landfills. To date, the Company has collected more than 2,600 tons of equipment along with 70 tons of batteries. Electronic waste is transferred to licensed companies, which recycle 80–90% of it into secondary materials to be used in new products.
In 2021, the program reached a new level with 1,500 tons of e-waste (60,000 units) collected and 250 more stores joining in to bring the number participating outlets to 750, or more than half of all M.Video-Eldorado stores. Most of the equipment came from the residents of Moscow, St Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yaroslavl and Samara. This year, the program expects to add another 200 stores in 10 regions. Most frequently people get rid of mobile phones, kettles and irons, as well as headphones and cables. Apart from the ongoing program, both chains hold regular promo events that encourage customers to dispose of their old equipment in exchange for discounts on new appliances from popular categories. On top of that, M.Video-Eldorado Group sent around one ton of equipment from its stores and offices for recycling, while also collecting over 44 tons of used batteries (two million pieces) for the same purpose. Consumers can drop them off in special boxes available in all M.Video and Eldorado stores. Residents in Moscow, St Petersburg, Rostov-on-Don, Chelyabinsk and Kazan were most active in disposing of used batteries.
In 2021, the Group also piloted a project to install reverse vending machines in stores. Users can return empty plastic bottles and aluminum cans up to two liters in volume to receive a promo code for a 10% discount on purchases in M.Video. To take advantage of the scheme, they will also need to enter their phone number onto the vending machine’s screen.
For several years, M.Video and Eldorado stores have been offering customers an alternative to plastic bags – FSC-certified paper packaging manufactured in an eco-friendly way. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of paper bags goes to support the restoration of broadleaf forests, a project implemented in partnership with the Beautiful Children in a Beautiful World charitable foundation.
The Company works continuously to improve its environmental performance by deploying new waste management practices. We sort and recycle waste from our operations, including cardboard, paper, polyethylene, polystyrene, wood, PET bottles, plastics, sanitizer containers, office equipment, and advertising materials (45 tons have been collected and transferred for recycling). Also recycled are metallic elements of retail equipment that have become obsolete and are no longer used.
To increase energy efficiency we have installed remote power management systems in 200 stores and put in place advanced lighting systems to reduce the load on the power grid (since 2015, all store have been equipped with LED lighting).
ESG transformation is also a major part of our strategic drive to digitalize the customer journey. Customers can use their mobile app at any store to learn more about product properties, check out user reviews, compare items, get a personalized price, pay for a product and reduce the time needed to receive it. To save paper and consumables, new stores use electronic price tags and mostly rely on digital displays, including TVs, to reach out to customers with advertising and additional information. When opening new retail facilities, the Company predominantly makes use of natural eco-friendly materials such as wood, glass, and concrete.