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Sears Launches Recycling Program

Sears has launched a CE trade-in and recycling program that allows shoppers to redeem their used products for gift cards, while Kmart will begin testing a CD and DVD exchange.

Sears’ online program, operated by Boston-based Gazelle, accepts CE devices in more than 20 categories, including cellphones, laptops, MP3 players and digital cameras. Consumers can have their products evaluated at, where they can also request a free shipping box and print out free-shipping labels.

Gazelle, a service of Second Rotation, will exchange functional devices for Sears gift cards within seven days of inspection. (Non-operational items will still be accepted for recycling at no cost, but consumers will not receive value for those products.) The gift cards can be redeemed at all of Sears’ and Kmart’s stores and Web sites.

As a special holiday promotion, participants will receive an additional 5 percent of the value of their trade-in, added to their Sears gift card, through Dec. 31.

According to Karen Austin, president of Sears Holding’s home electronics business unit, about 90 percent of the trade-in items are expected to be reused, and the remainder responsibly recycled, preventing them from ending up in landfills.

“Sears Blue Electronics Crew’s trade-in program is a great option for customers who want to turn their used electronics into potential buying power, while also helping conserve the environment,” she said.

Separately, Kmart will begin a five-store test of an entertainment software exchange program in two weeks. Under the plan, customers will be able to trade in their used CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray Discs at the Kmart service desk in exchange for store credit that can be used immediately.

The used movie and music discs could conceivably be resold by Kmart, Austin said. Sears presently sells a limited selection of refurbished CE products online that are obtained from distributors or fulfilled via third-party sites.