Creating a revolution through recycling

Syed Safiur Rahman (Shourov)

I had an amazing opportunity to get acknowledge an environment-friendly startup named Garbageman by their Chief Marketing Officer, Makhjanul Islam Prangon.  Back in 2017, Garbageman was founded by Mr. Fahim Uddin Shuvo, the CEO, with some household & kitchen waste for a mission to recycle those. Now it is a recycling base waste management company that is working with a vision of green and clean Dhaka. Let’s look at their startup journey:

How did you come up to be a part of Garbageman?

I was always concerned about the waste management systems in Bangladesh. I had a habit of throwing wastage in a designated place and instead of throwing wastes I used to carry them until I found a proper place to dump it. After thinking about it and doing a bit of research on waste management systems I saw that developed countries are managing wastage efficiently and also utilizing the wastage as resources. From that point onwards, I realized the waste management system of Bangladesh needs to be changed for a better environment.

What were the major obstacles you faced during the initial period?

Firstly, I did extensive research on proper waste management systems. I saw different videos on Youtube, studied waste management systems in developed countries. Then I planned a waste management system that can be implemented in Bangladesh and initially at Dhaka. I started a prototype phase of turning food wastes into organic fertilizers at my rooftop.

In the initial period, I faced different obstacles. There was a lack of resources, proper machinery, the existing model of waste management eventually was mismanaged lack of support from the governing bodies, proper place to execute the plan, the behavioral pattern of people towards waste management.

How do you collect wastes and what do you do with those wastes? Also, what are the services you provide through recycling?

Currently, we are focusing on mainly organic or food wastes. We decompose organic wastes with a scientific approach for making organic fertilizers. We collect wastes from different tea stalls, restaurants and kitchen market. We also made an app for collecting inorganic wastes from households. It’s in the pilot phase. Other than this we are also working with different waste management projects with some non-government and government organizations.

What is the marketing process you follow being a recycling-based startup?

Currently, we are inclined towards digital marketing more as it’s a way currently which can ensure to reach a maximum number of people and creating awareness. Other than this we have a strong B2B marketing strategy. We have also done some BTL activities.

What are the opportunities a recycled based entrepreneur can have in Bangladesh? Do you contemplate, this industry can have the advantage of being lucrative and for the betterment for the society too?

Currently, I can see that some policymakers are concerned about the waste management system in Bangladesh. It is creating more opportunities for the recycled based entrepreneur. The support system is growing gradually. The necessity of a better waste management system is being recognized by influential organizations.

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