Omaha, Neb. - Nebraska Furniture Mart has added laptops to its kiosk-based CE recycling program.
The retailer first installed the ATM-like recycling stations in October 2009. Developed by San Diego-based EcoATM, the vendors accept and electronically and/or visually inspect used devices and issue store credits or gift cards in return. The company administers trade-in promotions for retailers and manufacturers, and sells the used handsets through pre-auction/auction systems to secondary market buyers and recyclers.
Nebraska began the program by accepting mobile phones and has since expanded it to other CE products, including MP3 players and video games, at both its flagship Omaha and Kansas City, Kan., superstores. The retailer is now offering incentives of between $50 and $100 for any used laptop, working or not, toward the purchase of a new Intel i3, i5 or i7-based laptop.
Separately, EcoATM is also partnering with the National Cristina Foundation, a non-profit organization that matches donated computer equipment with needy schools and nonprofit organizations around the world. The program will help place the laptops back into reuse with American school kids and physically challenged individuals who otherwise cannot afford access to the technologies.
Laptops destined for reuse will undergo data sanitization processes, and will then be redistributed locally for a token recycling fee. "We are proud to partner with National Cristina Foundation, a leader in the reuse of computers serving underprivileged markets throughout the U.S.," said Tom Tullie, EcoATM's chairman/CEO. "This gives EcoATM a partner that supports thousands of charities nationwide, maximizing legitimate product reuse whenever possible."
Laptops that cannot be recycled will be disassembled for materials reclamation and recycling. Toxic heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, mercury and more are captured, ensuring they do not contaminate the environment, while gold, silver, copper and others are refined and reused, mitigating additional mining worldwide to source these materials.