Three Winners for the DAWERR Clearinghouse Bootcamp in its first year

Posted on December 21, 2021

I always consider our waste to be an important and untapped resource and that is why we encourage everyone to invest in this sector - Ziad Abichaker.”

NadeeraLive Love Recycle, and Verdetech are the three winners of DAWERR Clearinghouse Bootcamp, organized by Berytech for the Diverting Waste by Encouraging Reuse and Recycling (DAWERR) activity funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by ECODIT.

This program is designed to provide the selected companies with the support they need to develop a digital platform for source-separated recyclables to match demand and supply while ensuring transparency across the solid waste Recycling Value Chains (RVCs).

The DAWERR Clearinghouse is a chance for young entrepreneurs and startups to discover the opportunities in the Lebanese solid waste sector and explore the business viability for a web-based Lebanese marketplace for recyclables: “It is very important to develop a unified platform for Lebanon which will regulate the market of recyclables” shared Dr. Gaby Kassab, President of ECOSERV.

DAWERR is a five-year activity funded by USAID that aims to improve the social, environmental, and economic well-being of Lebanese citizens by establishing sustainable solid waste recovery and diversion programs in collaboration with municipalities throughout rural areas in Lebanon.

DAWERR is implemented by ECODIT in partnership with Berytech, Compost Baladi, ECODIT Liban and ELARD.

The Bootcamp 

The DAWERR Bootcamp was an exciting opportunity for the teams to focus on fostering teamwork, networking, benefit from coaching sessions with local experts, and create opportunities for knowledge exchange to explore the market and develop a valid business model for an e-commerce platform.

During the Bootcamp, and over four days, participants had the chance to participate in several workshops on business and marketing and watch a panel session on ‘Business viability for a web-based Lebanese marketplace for recyclables’, moderated by Richard Monzer– DAWERR Private Sector Engagement Specialist and hosting Pierre Baaklini– Founder of Lebanon Waste Management, Hadi Fathallah– Founder of Recyclo, Dr. Gaby Kassab- President of ECOSERV, and Christapor Dersarkissian- DAWERR Solid Waste Management Specialist.

They also received one-on-one clinics to present their pitch to the jury and attended sessions with Samar Khalil and Ziad Abichaker, experts in the field. “This platform is an opportunity for Lebanese youth to develop a marketplace for people collecting recyclables and for factories that recycle these materials while also contributing to the economy”, shared Samar Khalil, Environmental expert.

 Ingrid Salloum, DAWERR Project Manager from Berytech stated: “We received over 70 applications interested to develop a clearinghouse marketplace for recyclables and six of them were shortlisted to compete in this event.”

Startups who also participated in the bootcamp are: 

GARBALISER works on converting food waste into fertilizer through an anaerobic digester cooperating with municipalities to gather organic waste from local households. The converted solution helps to maintain sustainability, strengthen the Lebanese economy, and encourage local agriculture. This way, farmers will be able to benefit from locally manufactured fertilizer with high quality and reasonable prices.

Velvet Services provide across-the-board professional cleaning services, from commercial to domestic including laundry, moving, staff training, and pest control. They also additionally provide city cleaning and consultancy. The Velvet Services app is available on Android and IOS.

Fleet Serve works on the transformation of small and medium-size enterprises into data-driven companies able to operate globally. They work closely with their client to develop a comprehensive, situation-specific understanding of trends and opportunities.

Meet The Winners

Live Love Recycle is a mobile application that connects people keen to sort their waste and to recycle to a recycling facility, as there is no public waste management in Beirut, and no affordable recyclable collection services. With just one click a driver on an e-bike will pick up the recyclables within 30 minutes. 

Nadeera is a social enterprise offering an integrated, inclusive, and innovative solid waste management platform to municipalities in Lebanon. They design rapid, fit-for-purpose, and citizen-centric masterplans, and deploy technology solutions to support municipalities in implementing the master plans, waste tracing and validation, operations oversight, in addition to citizen outreach and behavioral change campaigns.

VerdeTech is the first full-service and a licensed recycling company by the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Interior Affairs under the WEEE Directive (2002/96/EC). It seeks to raise awareness on the urgency of acting to limit electrical and electronic waste and offers solutions sharing a common vision to protect the environment and live a greener and more sustainable life by abiding by the industry’s guidelines and norms.

Moving to Incubation

The three winners of the co-creation bootcamp will move to a three-month incubation program and receive an in-kind grant of up to $3,000 each.  The incubation program will provide support for developing the solutions presented, and will set the roadmap of activities, assess their needs and challenges, and create matching opportunities  with experts.  At the end of this program, the three winners will have to compete for the last phase of the DAWERR Clearinghouse initiative.

The finalist entity will continue receiving business and technical support under the incubation program for an additional six months.  It will also receive a grant of up to $40,000 in total over a period of two years.

“I always consider our waste to be an important and untapped resource”, shared Ziad Abichaker, CEO of Cedar Environmental, “and that is why we encourage everyone to invest in this sector and learn from it.”