Recyclebank Offers Rewards for Green Actions

7/11/11Follow @jpruth

As crafty parents know, turning chores into games can motivate hard work. New York’s Recyclebank uses a similar approach with its incentive program to encourage recycling.

Working with community and school organizations, as well as with individual members, Recyclebank offers rewards points to those who recycle empty bottles, cereal boxes, pet food cans, sandwich bags, and the like. The rewards points, as with other types of incentive programs, can be exchanged for discounts on products and services from retailers and restaurants. In the never-ending cycle of manufacturing and consumption, Recyclebank believes its incentives can help stem the tide of waste. “We need to find ongoing solutions to live in balance with the resources that are available on this planet,” says CEO Jonathan Hsu.

Offering incentives for good “green behavior” seems to be catching on. The seven-year-old company is growing rapidly, Hsu says, with more than 2.6 million members in its program, up three times from a year ago. “We are deployed in 300 communities in the US and the UK,” he says.

Hsu took the reins at the company last October after serving as CEO of digital marketing company 24/7 Real Media in New York. One of his goals has been to expand Recyclebank’s services. In May Recyclebank acquired GreenYour, a Web-based guide that offers tips on living green. According to a June regulatory filing, RecycleRewards, of which Recyclebank is a subsidiary, secured $2.1 million in equity. Since its inception Recyclebank has raised … Next Page »

João-Pierre S. Ruth is the editor of Xconomy New York. He can be reached at jpruth@xconomy.com and followed on Twitter @jpruth. Follow @jpruth

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