Content of this unit
Main circular strategies
In the previous unit you could learn about circular business models. Circular value creation is the core of a circular business model. This is the component of the business model that enables creation of economic, social and environmental value based on a circular management of products and/or materials.

With the vast number of possibilities for creating value out of the circular economy thinking, it can be challenging to assess all the options.

Within the concept of reuse there are a variety of strategies for the preservation of value of products and components upon their end-of-use.

Read about LES REBELLES D'ANVERs and TAPAZZ circular businesses below:

Clothing libraries are the perfect remedy for overconsumption. Everyone loves to replenish their wardrobe every once in awhile, yet consuming at such high speed puts enormous pressure on the entire system. The principle of leasing and returning clothes, by contrast, allows for some variation in your wardrobe, without having to buy new items all the time. Inspired by French and Dutch initiatives, the first Flemish clothing library, Les ReBelles d’Anvers, opened in the spring of 2016 and  offers its services both online and offline.

TAPAZZ’S  peer-to-peer model allows you to share your car with others whenever you don’t need it yourself. You set your own rate per hour or per kilometer, and you decide who gets to rent your vehicle. There are no registration or subscription costs; the lessee only pays for his usage with a prepaid credit card. The lessor, in turn, is protected by a ‘no cure no gain’ system, meaning that he only has to pay Tapazz when he actually makes money by sharing his car. Tapazz uses modern technology and breaks down barriers, making car sharing so much more interesting and available for a larger audience. Almost every car you see on the streets is eligible for the system.

What do you think what kind of strategy do these businesses use? The definitions of some of the main circular economy strategies will help you find the right answer!

Reuse: Direct secondary re-usage or resale extends the product life by second hand use. Therefore, fewer products, which serve for the same purpose, have to be produced. The reused products can be the complete products, or can be components of the product which are then sold. Re-usage of a component or product should be considered against the energy consumption throughout its lifetime. For example older electrical and electronic equipment tends to consume more energy and this might offset the achievements of product life extension.

Refurbishment: Upgrading and updating of products and product parts for the purpose of a ‘second-life’ and the ability to market them ‘as new’.
Refurbishing means collecting discarded products or materials that can be refinished and sanitized to serve their original functions. Refurbishment is often aesthetic in nature and results in a product that, although in good condition, may not be comparable with new or remanufactured products. This process is typically less intensive than remanufacturing, which results in a final product comparable to a brand-new product.

Remanufacturing: is the process of restoring the product or part functionality to “as-new” quality.

Maintain: Maintenance is a critical activity (fixing the faulty part of a product)carried out in the use phase of the product life cycle to prolong system availability. Maintenance is the most efficient way to retain or restore equipment to its desired level of performance. Proper maintenance has the added responsibility of protecting the equipment from further damage, personal safety and pollution prevention. During the product life-cycle, after-sales services and spare parts may generate more than three times the turnover of the original purchase.

Prolong: It is also about maintaining the utility of the products for a long as possible and only replacing those components that are worn or broken. However products also need to be designed in such a way to ensure repairs can be easily completed.

Re-cycling: Recycling is the process of breaking down and re-using materials that would otherwise be thrown away as trash. The process avoids waste going to landfill, reduces energy usage and the impact on the environment. Recycling is commonly done in the metals, paper, glass, plastics, textiles and electronics industries. Downcycling means the recycling of material into lesser quality. Most recycled materials lose their purity or value in the recycling process, meaning the material is degraded and cannot be used for their original use. Upcycling on the other hand is increasing the value of a product through using it for a different purpose

Shared-use:  A business option based on the sharing of human and physical resources, such as creation, production, distribution, trade and consumption of goods and services.