“He’s the right person in the right place.”
Our business, recently named a ‘sustainable hero’ by the town of Beringen, is doing well. In 2016, we moved from Aarschot to Beringen in order to double our storage capacity for discarded electronic devices from the B2B sector. Since then we’ve continued to expand, with new services and a new industrial building in Beringen. To support operational policy, our founder’s son Yannick Adriaenssens joined the team as COO on 1 December.
Increasing data destruction
Since arriving in Beringen, it’s been smooth sailing for Out of Use. CEO Mark Adriaenssens: "Since 2018, the introduction of the GDPR privacy law has raised awareness of the importance of data security. Increasingly, companies are destroying their old data and happily, in doing so they're also paying attention to the reuse of devices and their raw materials. Every year, we receive about 1,500 tonnes of electrical waste. The percentage that we can recover for reuse has risen from 7 to 35% in recent years. And that will carry on rising. Sustainable business policies are continuing to gain momentum and we are a key partner for our customers in this."
Batteries and airbags from the automotive industry
In 2019, we expanded our range of services to include the collection of electric car batteries from the 44 car brands affiliated with Febelauto. We invested in a large fire-safe container and obtained a permit for working with explosives. We now use this container to store airbags from the automotive industry, which are then recycled abroad.
Subsidiary and sister company
Last year, Out Of Use in Brussels also set up a subsidiary organisation, Circular.Brussels, a non-profit association that aims to close the digital gap in Belgium. They collect devices free of charge in the Brussels-Capital Region and offer them within the social network of poverty organisations. This non-profit association is led by Dennis Adriaenssens, Mark’s eldest son. This gives Out Of Use the perfect partner to respond to social needs.
In early 2020, Out Of Use became one of five founding partners in the start-up Watt4ever, a sister company that converts electric vehicle batteries into energy storage systems.
"To ensure the continued growth of the company," Mark Adriaenssens goes on, "we set up an advisory board this year in cooperation with Voka Limburg. That board highlighted the issue of long-term continuity. Additionally, now that I'll have to divide my time more and more between three companies and also want to have the time to keep innovating, there was an obvious need for support in the day-to-day management of Out Of Use.”
That support recently arrived on 1 December in the person of Yannick Adriaenssens, the manager's youngest son. He starts as Chief Operational Officer, assisting Mark in the operational management of the company. Yannick has a master's in commercial engineering and has already gained extensive experience working for major companies such as ING and Febelfin. “He’s the right person in the right place. We are moving into a bright and sustainable future focused on creating value for our customers and society,” concludes Mark Adriaenssens.