Applend

"Applend" is a product-service agency. It is providing local, decentralized shops with information and technology to operate a lending business for economically, socially and ecologically sustainable products.

About You

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About You

First Name

Michael

Tell us about yourself/your team.

I'm a media engineer, I've been interested in sustainability for quite a while. Interested in Collaborative Consumption, Urban Agriculture, Relocalization, Renewable Energies, Design for the BOP, Cradle to Cradle, Upcycling, Art, Music, Veganism.

What makes you an intrapreneur? What are the skills, capabilities, and personality traits that make you an intrapreneur?

Perfectionist but also good at Improvising, Good Mediator, Empathy, Interdisciplinary Thinking, Broad set of interests, Humor, Hope.

About Your Organization

Company Country

Germany, BE, Berlin

Primary country where this project is creating social impact

Germany, BE, Berlin

Additional countries or regions

Industrial countries, Emerging countries, the world

Industry

Consumer Products

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Innovation

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Select the stage that best applies to your solution

Idea (you're poised to launch)

The Need: What social or environmental problem are you trying to solve?

When selling their products, manufacturers loose the included raw materials. That's why they use cheap materials, that are hazardous, hard to recycle. Due to policy changes, manufacturers will increasingly be obliged to decrease the externalities of their operations, benefiting local communities while reducing their environmental impact. On the other hand, consumers are owning a lot and using little. An average power drill in industrial countries is used for 9-14 min in its lifetime. Additionally, consumers often can't afford to buy high-quality appliances, Raw Material Costs are rising. So does landfill.

The Solution: What is your solution? Be specific!

In an evolutionary process with selected manufacturers, the "Applend Agency" is developing high-quality, durable, repairable, locally produced, easy-to-recycle cradle-to-cradle products. Based on the agency's portfolio, local "Applending Shops" are lending these products to consumers, caring for maintenance, repairs and the return of the raw-materials to the manufacturer, once the product has reached the end of its life-cycle. The consumer is relieved from the burden of caring about the sustainability, quality, recycling of products. He can stop feeling guilty, he's sharing the most sustainable aplliances with thousands of his neighbours. The environmental footprint of his consumption patterns is decreasing dramatically. Due to medium-term rising raw-material costs and the manufacturers' obligation to internalize externalities, sharing the best is even cheaper than buying the cheapest.

The Solution: Why is this solution innovative for your company and industry?

Manufacturers can decpouple their operations from fluctuating resource-prices. The importance of production prizes is becoming insignificant, since quality, durability and sustainability are mattering for the Applend-Agency. Manufacturers can drastically shift from production to R&D, relocalize their business, pay higher wages. Due to the shift from a supply to a demand-driven economy and long-term producer-agency cooperation, marketing expenses can be cut significantly.

The Model: Walk us through a specific example of how your solution makes a difference; include your primary activities.

The "Applend-Agency" has been cooperating with Sony on a sustainable-beamer. It is using LED-technology, so the "bulb" is extremely long-lasting. Though the engineers put a lot of effort into fixing problems with the lens-mechanics, that part breaks far too often, making it the predetermined breaking point. In the latest design of the beamer, the lens mechanics can be easily replaced by staff in the "Applend"-shops. The beamer's body material is a ridiculously pricy polymer, But it can be recycled up to 200 times without quality-loss. Since the beamer stays Sony's property, using the best material for 200 times becomes an economically viable option.

Living Space has become very expensive to maintain due to skyrocketing heating costs, so I halved my squarefeet and possessions. I'm planning to have a movie night with some friends, I have to lend a beamer, a popcorn machine, a deep fryer and additional dishes. That's a lot of bulky stuff - via Smartphone-app I'll have one of Applend's cargo bikes bring it along. When setting up the beamer in the same place like last time, I access my presets via Wi-Fi. The beamer adjusts its focus, keystone and alignment. While watching a thriller, having fresh popcorn and onion rings, one of my jumpy friends breaks a dish. I'm picking up the pieces and put them in the provided recycling bag.

"No problem. The dishes are made from fusible ceramics. I can replicate the dish in our 3D-printer in the Applend-shop." The deliveryman fetches my lent stuff without checking for further damages: That's due to my flawless ebay statistics.

The Marketplace: Who are your peers and competitors? Identify others also working to address the needs you are and what differentiates you from them. What challenges could these players pose to your success or growth?

Home-improvement markets are lending tools. They are situated outside the city centres and lead their customers through a complicated borrowing process (often including deposit), what makes the seamless borrowing of tools impractical. P2P-lending platforms like frents.com are enabling the users to borrow things from their neighbours. Like above, the process is still too complicated, letting having your own seem like a more viable option: The exchange of the goods requires a lot of communication; the quality of the product isn't trusted. What happens when the lent object breaks?

This Entry is about (Issues)

Impact

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Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world.

While thinking about a paradigm shift from owing to using aplliances, I realized that industrial countires are extremely over-saturated with things of sporadical use: My father is owing a scarifier, his left and right neighbour are owning one respectively. So changing behaviour in that respect is a long-term process, which might require external stimuli: The transfer of online-sharing to offline habits like car-sharing, clothes-swap, community gardening, creating breeding grounds for collaborative consumption. A narrowing gap between wages in industrialized and emerging ciuntries. Rising raw-material costs. On the other hand, establishing the "Applend" system from scratch in Emerging and Developing countries could be a historical leapfrogging moment. A lot of people in pre-industrialized countries are suffering from a lack of opportunities. "Applend" could provide local communities with access to high-quality tools while creating jobs in the local manufacturing of these goods.

What has been the impact of your solution to date?

What is your projected impact over the next 1 to 3 years?

What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?

Sustainability

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What is the benefit or value you're creating for your business?

Approximately 70 words left (570 characters).

How are you leveraging internal resources (funds, time, knowledge, etc.) to support this initiative?

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Expand on your answer, explaining the long-term funding and support plan.

Tell us about your partnerships across your company and externally that are key to your project's success.

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What internal support have you gotten for your project? What kind of push-back have you received?

Approximately 60 words left (425 characters)

83 weeks ago Emily Bosland said: Hi Michael, Thank you for your interest in the League of Intrapreneurs. Based on your entry, it sounds like you’re a social ... about this Competition Entry. - read more >
85 weeks ago Michael Conzelmann updated this Competition Entry.
85 weeks ago Michael Conzelmann submitted this idea.