News from Brussels Office

Over the past few weeks we have won a series of new euro-denominated contracts.  Two projects on circular economy were won in association with a leading professional services company in Belgium.  DG ENV appointed us to report on the printer cartridge market.  Two trade associations asked us to facilitate member meetings on sustainable product innovations.

Looking ahead to 2017, on 27 January we will be launching a new business-led European Remanufacturing Council at an invitation-only event at the Stanhope Hotel in central Brussels: follow the link to the pdf below for details.

Our sponsorship of the global remanufacturing summit continues.  We presented at the Beijing Summit during 2016 and gave an award to academician Binshi Xu.  In our view, remanufacturing is the back-bone of the circular economy.  Led by Chinese-sourced investment and new technologies that require larger scale businesses, we expect to see consolidation and growth in the sector.  Our leadership of the European Remanufacturing Network will continue into 2017 as we attract business members to the European Reman Council based in Brussels.

In the past few days, we have been awarded a three-year Horizon 2020 funded research project with a value to us of €260,000.  The €9.7 million project involves several prestigious companies and creates an opportunity for us to form new long-term relationships.  We will provide further details of this once contracts are signed.

News from the UK

Our product eco-labelling work continues to grow.  We manage licences for 1,604 products owned by companies that range in size from PPG Inc to Camira or Delphis.  The EU Ecolabel is a tier 1 system, highly respected for its technical authority and transparent system of governance.  In a year in which the public has been made aware of the widespread use of plastic beads in many household products we noted that 10 years ago the EU Ecolabel criteria banned the use of plastic beads.

Product stewardship work in the furniture, textiles and leather product categories continued alongside some new innovative work that we hope will develop in 2017.  We identified a common waste material in the food and drink sector and over the past year we have been working with a major company to find higher value uses for it.

The announcement in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement of additional funding for innovation R&D is good news for our staff working with Innovate UK.  And we were pleased to be appointed as advisors on airport expansion in association with a Dutch specialist contractor.  ‘Brexit’ uncertainties earlier in the year have been unhelpful in delaying project start dates, but this now appears to be easing.  We are aiming to minimise the direct risks to the business: this includes inviting closer working arrangements with other professional services organisations with similar ambitions to ours in the circular economy and innovation services.  

Download pdf files