If you have, you’re probably ahead of your competition. But taking action is more difficult than planning for change. And if your company hasn’t yet launched a product or service into the Circular Economy, you’re not alone.
A multi-trillion dollar opportunity that addresses some of the world’s largest challenges
Trends suggest that customers are more likely to pay a premium for products and brands that align with their own way of thinking. And governmental bodies are acting on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 with stricter regulations to control the potentially damaging effects of the Linear Economy.
Taking transparent action on consumer concerns is not only a necessity, but a golden opportunity.
It’s important to see the full product-lifespan of a successful circular product at the ideation, or design phase.
It’s then necessary to re-conceptualise design, production and after-sales processes by connecting different stakeholders and functions throughout the development of products. For example, business development with R&D. Getting this right will empower your company to earn more.
Let’s assume that you’ve designed a product for consumer rental. Your business model states that the longer the product and materials can be in use, the better the return on investment.
Depending on its longevity, your product may exchange owner multiple times during its life. And when it finally reaches its end of life, since your organisation keeps the ownership throughout the lifespan, there’s an opportunity to capitalise on the residual material or component value.
The Circular Economy framework originates from multiple schools of thought: Biomimicry, Industrial Ecology, Natural Capitalism, The Blue Economy Systems Approach, Performance Economy and the Cradle to Cradle Design Philosophy. To learn more, visit www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org.
Tools and aids are necessary to turn strategy into action.
Making the Circular Economy a reality for your business can be difficult in practice. Your concern should be to design a system, rather than a product. Naturally, a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) system can help you achieve that goal.
So TECHNIA has researched the potential for PLM systems and digitalisation to support the Circular Economy and facilitate the development of circular products.
We’re already helping organisations to find and realise these opportunities.
Doing so, we use the power of data, digital collaborative innovation, simulation and digital twins. We do all of this early in the innovation cycle with state-of-the-art PLM software as a foundation.
PLM manages the product lifecycle from idea to end product and all the data related to design, components and materials collate there. The virtual collaborative platform of PLM then provides an area to make impactful product decisions.
With access to a transparent “single source of truth” throughout your organisation, your circular visions go from drawing board to successful execution.
The Circular Economy aims to extend product and material usage by providing an influential framework for industries to design and manufacture smarter. It aims to do this while sustaining living standards, reducing extraction of the earth’s finite resources and lessening our impact on the environment.
The need for progressing from the current system has become clear in recent years.
We have yet to find a solution for the expected increase in demand for products, food, mobility, housing and materials, based on the current Linear Economy. And with researchers suggesting that the global middle class population will double by 2030, we are swiftly running short on time. The Circular Economy focuses on minimising waste by removing it from the product lifecycle.
Try to identify a naturally occurring object which doesn’t have a biological cycle and you’ll soon realise that waste is essentially a human invention.
Together, we can embark on the journey to eliminate waste by applying business models which capitalise on re-use, life extension, re-manufacturing and recycling.
Each of these models loop products and materials back into the cycle again, and again.
Our largest value chains create so much waste that reducing it even slightly represents a massive economic and environmental opportunity. In fact, 80% of EU consumer products end up in landfills after one use cycle. While packaging accounts for 40% of all plastic products, causes about 100 billions dollars of annual loss to the global economy.
“We deplete natural capital to produce manufactured capital, and then we massively underutilise that same manufactured capital for which we have paid so dearly.”
Begin realising your circular ambitions today.