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On a mission to rehome 100 million devices: meet reboxed, the London brand transforming the pre-owned and refurbished mobiles market

Today, reboxed is officially announcing its launch, on a mission to rehome 100 million mobile phones by 2030. The company brings the first on-demand platform to the UK’s mobile phone market.

According to IDC’s Worldwide used smartphone forecast, 2019-2023iv, worldwide shipments of used smartphones will reach over 330 units by 2023, with compound annual growth of 13.6%. Now reboxed is set to transform the market by introducing a quality-assured circular model to replace the current linear one: rehome, rebox and repeat has arrived.

reboxed takes the hassle and uncertainty out of buying refurbished mobiles thanks to TechCheckÒ, its 70-point diagnostic test that guarantees buyers that the phone is working as it should. There’s even a 15-month free warranty as back-up. A reboxed device can be up to 40% less than the brand-new list price – and comes looking and feeling better than new in eco-friendly packaging.

Buyers can sell or trade-in too, getting an instant quote and payment in minutes at the reboxed store in Brixton or through the doorstep collection service, currently being trialled in London.

And reboxed doesn’t just reward people. For every device bought or sold, reboxed plants 10 trees and pays to offset the CO2 emissions for the entire lifetime of the phone. reboxed is also awaiting certification as B Corp and is signed up to 1% for the Planet, a commitment to give 1% of gross sales each year to approved environmental non-profit organisations.

“The current lifecycle of our mobile phones is unsustainable. We buy a new device, use it for a year – maybe two – then ditch it and get another one, which is also brand new and creating environmental issues at both ends of the process,” said Matt Thorne, co-founder of reboxed. “At the same time, buying and selling used tech seems to involve too much time, effort and risk, so most of us just don’t bother. We end up just leaving a perfectly good devices of tech in our bedside drawer, gathering dust, when we could be refurbing, reboxing and rehoming them.”

The company was created and launched during COVID by founders Phil Kemish and Matt Thorne. Phil takes his place as the company’s CEO, with a background as a multi-award-winning marketer, having founded successful social and influencer agency Disrupt, and a regular keynote speaker at some of the world’s leading events. Matt, a creative director and graphic designer by trade , co-founded GRM Daily – the UK’s leading urban music platform with 3.5million subscribers and over 3 billion YouTube views – and is heavily featured on the platform’s new documentary ‘Together We Rise’, before co-founding Disrupt with Phil.

The team have spent the last year building the brand and platform and have a team of experienced investors including Pete Petrondas founder of Envirfone and ex Dyson CEO Martin McCourt backing them. reboxed is teaming up with some of the leading refurbishers, mobile phone wholesalers and logistics companies to bring this innovative model to the UK, with a goal to disrupt the space and create a brand that is built for today’s on-demand conscious consumer.

“The overproduction of new devices and the e-waste epidemic are problems on a global scale. We wanted to create a brand that could help fight these crises but also represent a new standard for refurbished and pre-owned tech,” said Phil Kemish, cofounder and CEO of reboxed. “We also realised that people have a growing need for quality tech without the long contracts and costs associated with buying new. This, mixed with our need to make smarter choices for the planet, make reboxed a better way to keep up-to-date with the latest tech while helping to fight e-waste.”

[i] Product Environmental Report iPhone 11, https://www.apple.com/environment/pdf/products/iphone/iPhone_11_PER_sept2019.pdf, September 2019.

[ii] BBC News, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-49409055, August 2019.

[iii] Global E-waste Monitor 2020, https://globalewaste.org/, 2020.

iv IDC’s Worldwide used smartphone forecast, 2019-2023, https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=US45726219, 2020

Lisa Baker is Group Editor for the Need to See IT Publishing Group. Lisa writes about HR, Technology, Health, the Environment and Business.
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