Business incubator and firm offer cash for outdated devices

Michael McCord
Seacoast Online

DURHAM – A business incubator and a company that specializes in handling electronics recycling have banded together to provide a financial incentive to consumers wondering what to do with old electronic devices such as mobile phones, laptops, personal computers, digital cameras and digital music players such as iPods.

The program is called “Gadgets for Cash” with TradePort of Somersworth and the Durham-based Idea Greenhouse partnering to offer a locally-focused electronics trade-in program.

The goal, said Tom Elliot, founder of the Idea Greenhouse, is to facilitate a new way of thinking and acting to deal with the growth of unused electronics equipment that all too often ends up in landfills.

“It’s going well, but it seems to be a new concept for people,” Elliot said about the program, which launched last month.

“Americans are used to throwing stuff away.”

The program works like this: TradePort will process, sell and compensate consumers who bring their salable items like laptops, Apple iPods, smartphones to the Idea Greenhouse, a new office home for entrepreneurs and innovators that itself recently opened in downtown Durham.

After a price is offered, Elliot explained, consumers can choose to get cash for their items or contribute their resale proceeds to the Idea Greenhouse, in support of its programming and community-building.

“TradePort’s growth is fueled by receiving valuable used gadgets and electronics for resale,” said Sam Biddle, TradePort co-founder. “This is our first attempt to source quality items locally. With the Seacoast’s love of technology and strong household income, we think we can find items in our own backyard, either from Durham, University of New Hampshire students, or the region at large.”

Founded a decade ago, TradePort specializes in the exploding service market of corporate asset recovery and reverse logistics. It refurbishes, resells, recycles and properly disposes of a wide range of old electronics products. Elliot said the Idea Greenhouse is an affordable and flexible office facility for entrepreneurs, startups, social innovators and creative idea makers.

The TradePort/Idea Greenhouse partnership, he said, is a strong example of Seacoast innovation to benefit the environment and the bottom line. “TradePort is a terrific story of local entrepreneurs leveraging the Web to build a sustainable and successful business in the Seacoast,” Elliott said. “Our members love gadgets, and gadget fans will love Idea Greenhouse, so it’s a perfect match. Our partnership will remove electronic waste from local landfills and bring needed resources and attention to our community (Idea Greenhouse) growing great ideas.”

The growth of e-waste has become a worldwide problem. According to the Web site dosomething.org, Americans discard between 300 million and 400 million electronic items per year and less than 20 percent of e-waste is recycled. While e-waste represents only two percent of trash in landfills, it adds up to 70 percent of the toxic waste – such as lead and mercury – in those landfills. About 50 million cell phones are replaced worldwide each month but only 10 percent are recycled.

“Everybody wins with this program,” Elliot said about “Cash for Gadgets,” which is believed to be the first consumer-based effort in the state. Elliot said they take items such as televisions, digital cameras, film cameras, video equipment, desktop computers, laptop computers, iPods, iPhones, DVD players, video games, video game consoles and more.

But there is a caveat, he said.

Newer items will have greater value and the value of each item must exceed $50 or it can’t be sold in the program. Items that can’t be sold can be dropped off at TradePort USA where a small fee will be charged to ensure proper disposal.

Gadgets for Cash

To trade in: People interested in the program can bring items to the Idea Greenhouse on Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon, or by appointment. Staff will be on hand to appraise the resale value and arrange for payment. Sellers can also assess the value of an item through an inquiry inquire via the Idea Greenhouse’s Web site and a response will come within 48 hours.

More details www.ideagreenhouse.biz/gadgetcash.

About TradePort:
For a decade, TradePort has offered an outsourcing service for asset recovery, third-party logistics, and reverse logistics for consumer electronics. Our New England warehouse and headquarters offers reverse logistics, consumer electronics test and repair, manufacturer warranty negotiation, Internet marketing and resale.

We have established our own quality standard for preparing merchandise for resale called TradePort's Product Evaluation Process (PEP). Our expertise lies in consumer electronics asset recovery, reverse logistics, merchandising and marketing. Our trade-in and recycle program delivers value to your customers by providing sustainable options while being environmentally responsible. TradePort is ISO 9001 : 2008 certified. For more information visit: www.tradeportusa.com

Media Contact:
Allyson Kimball, Director of Marketing & Communication
22 Canal Street, Suite 125
Somersworth, NH 03878 603-692-2900


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