Zoom In: Nadeera, Digital Solutions for Solid Waste Management

Posted on June 27, 2022

The idea of a recyclables clearinghouse came as a natural continuation of our work as we seek to close the gaps in the waste management value chain in Lebanon.”

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What They Do:

Nadeera is a social enterprise that provides digital solutions for solid waste management. They work with property managers, municipalities, and waste management companies to deploy holistic waste management masterplans enabled by their tech solutions and exclusive user credit technology.

Startup Experience:

“Having been in the waste management field in Lebanon for many years, we identified several gaps in the waste management value chain, particularly in prevention, sorting at source, monitoring and verification processes. Therefore, we developed Nadeera to capture the value chain right from waste generation at homes to collection, secondary sorting, and recycling. 

Our solution allows municipalities or property managers to educate and incentivize residents to sort at home, inspect and verify the quality of their sorting, send them tailored feedback messages, and reward them with our loyalty points system on the Nadeera Marketplace.

We aim to reduce the waste being sent to landfills, open dumps, and the conversion of waste to energy. Nadeera can achieve this by helping people sort more and sort better, which leads to increasing material recovery rates at sorting facilities, increasing revenues from selling recyclables, and unlocking a value of 120$ per ton of waste currently not being exploited.

Nadeera came to life when we applied to the first batch of the Berytech Cleanergy Accelerator in May 2020. While in the accelerator, we built our idea from a mere prototype to an MVP, up to a fully developed product with 3 mobile apps and a waste sorting inspection system. 

We piloted in the municipality of Bickfaya-Mhaydsseh with Biclean Sorting Facility and deployed a full research study to assess the impact of Nadeera under the guidance of Dr. Salma Moussa, Assistant Professor of Political Science at Yale University and Dr. Kristen Kao, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Gothenburg. 

Nadeera was able to fully launch in August 2021 in both Bickfaya and Ras el Maten, onboarding over 600 households in Bickfaya, and over 2000 in Ras el Maten and surrounding municipalities while working with Green Mount Recycling. During that time, we managed to establish Nadeera in the UAE, by landing a pilot with the 450-villa Bloom Gardens residential compound.

Over the past year, we’ve come a long way. Nadeera today has raised over $500,000 in grants and revenues and is active in 3 countries, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), and Lebanon where its solutions are being applied. We also recently received the Technology for Humanity award at LEAP22 in Riyadh, which was a huge motivation for the team as we move forward.

The above has helped us expand our service offerings as a company. On top of our existing solution, which is implemented within municipalities and residential compounds to educate and incentivize residents on sorting at source, we have developed two new products to complement its currently applied model and encompass a wider audience group and market: Nadeera Smart Bin for automatic recyclables drop-off and Yalla Return as a recyclables-for-cash solution in densely-populated cities. 

Most recently, with the help of PepsiCo, Yalla Return was launched in Beirut in December 2021, and three months in, we have over 500 regular users and more than 2 tons of recyclables collected. We’re gearing up to expand to more locations in the city to service more people. 

We are also partnering with PepsiCo in KSA, where we are planning to open our waste management facility and launch 2 projects in Riyadh in collaboration with Ericsson and MobilyPay. Each project will be offering a different product, will target a different profile of individuals, and will be situated at the different poles within the city. Similarly, in Abu Dhabi, we are working to establish our own facility and develop our Smart Bin solution to accommodate the needs of major construction and engineering companies, such as Oracle and CCC, by customizing it to cater to construction and demolition waste streams. The partnerships with Oracle and CCC were established after Nadeera participated in startAD’s Corporate Sprint Accelerator and won pilots with each of the companies.  

Despite the many challenges facing us in Lebanon, our impact here remains our main focus. And through the partnerships that we are forming with international corporations and local actors, we hope to propel Nadeera into being a more prominent and mature regional startup, allowing us to give back even more in Lebanon. 

The idea of a recyclables clearinghouse came as a natural continuation of our work as we seek to close the gaps in the waste management value chain in Lebanon. Working with several waste management actors in Lebanon over the past years, we witnessed firsthand the struggles in market access, material quality, trade verification and regulation, as this market remains mostly dominated by the informal sector. 

Through the USAID Clearinghouse program, we plan to better shape our solution, deepen our understanding of the pain points faced, and expand our network of stakeholders. 

Being a Berytech startup, we completely understand the importance of this phase and the team’s support and mentorship as we start a new product; therefore, our focus now is on problem validation and talking to stakeholders, while we work to launch our MVP by end of April 2022.”

About DAWERR

The Diverting Waste by Encouraging Reuse and Recycling Activity (DAWERR) is a five-year activity funded by the United States Agency for International Development (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. Learn more about DAWERR Activity: https://berytech.org/programs/dawerr/