Trial Begins for Circular Renewables Platform Providing an Effective System to Match Supply and Demand for Plastics and other Recyclable Resources to Promote a Circular Economy
Mar. 31, 2021
Recotech Co., Ltd.
Nissho Electronics Corporation
NTT Communications Corporation
Sojitz Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director: Masayoshi Fujimoto; “Sojitz”), Recotech Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director: Ei Nozaki; “Recotech”), Nissho Electronics Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director: Shinichi Teranishi; “NELCO”), and NTT Communications Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director: Toru Maruoka; “NTT Com”) will begin a trial (“the trial/this trial”) for a circular renewables platform (“this platform”) to visualize plastics historically discarded as waste and other recyclable resources*¹ and facilitate sales of these resources between suppliers and demanders to contribute to the realization of a circular economy.*²
As concerns of environmental issues such as climate change, plastic pollution, and the depletion of natural resources have increased, so has the urgent call for the realization of circular economies to limit resource waste and to promote recycling of finite resources needed to drive the economy. However, it is difficult to secure quality assurance and stable supply for recyclable resources. Japan, in particular, has a low recycling rate for waste products. In the trial, this platform will help to visualize the quality and amount of supply for recyclable resources and facilitate sales between suppliers and users in order to contribute to the realization of a circular economy.
2．Characteristics of this Platform
This platform will combine the circular renewables platform developed by Recotech, Material Pool System,*³ with NTT Com’s Smart Data Platform*⁴ to help participating businesses visualize type, volume, and location of waste generated in real time and accumulate waste data. During the trial period, plastic waste suppliers and users will be matched, and this platform will enable recyclable resources to be ordered and supplied, a function that will extended to the transport of recyclable resources and other related services. In addition, this platform will offer users a rating function to provide evaluations of participating businesses. This platform will help to realize a circular economy by promoting business creation not only among users and suppliers of recyclable resources, but also for companies involved throughout the supply chain. This platform’s main offerings include the following:
（1）Visualizes recyclable resources
This platform will utilize IoT to visualize the type, volume, and location of recyclable waste for each participating business. Data accumulated can be analyzed as part of the platform’s function, which helps to determine whether supply and demand needs can be met and to project via AI analysis the volume of renewable resources that will be generated. As a result, this platform can help to ensure stable supply and demand.
（2）Facilitates sales of recyclables and related services
This platform’s functions include facilitating the sale of recyclable resources between participating businesses. Suppliers who were previously forced to discard recyclables from lack of demand can be matched to users with no means of procurement, helping to realize effective recycling of resources. Future plans for the platform include making it possible to place and receive orders for related services such as transport of recyclable resources, which will contribute to new business creation for logistics companies, recycling companies, and other participating businesses.
（3）Provides ratings of participating businesses
This platform will also enable participating businesses to rate the companies from which they buy and sell resources. The ratings can serve as indicators for trade and promote transactions with highly rated companies while discouraging trade with companies with low ratings.
３．Overview of the Trial
Partner companies will be recruited to use this platform to visualize recyclables that can be supplied by participating businesses, promote sales of recyclables between participating companies, manufacture products that use recyclables from these sales, and provide quality ratings. Verification tests will be conducted to assess the efficacy of this platform, which aims to realize a circular economy.
Improvements will be made to continuous user interfaces (UI) and user experience (UX) through this trial. Additional functions are also under consideration such as quality assurance of renewables as well as mapping of optimal distribution routes. The aim is for all partner companies to experience the value provided by this platform.
（1）Planned Trial Period
March 2021 – April 2022
Planned for Tokyo and several other areas
（3）Role of Each Company
1) Attract potential partners to utilize this platform
2) Support implementation (commercialization) of this platform
3) Verification and interviews with partners to improve UX
1) Provide Material Pool System and GOMiCO*⁵
2) Verification and interviews with partners to improve UX
3) Propose and plan verification projects using its network of waste-handling industries
1) Propose and plan platform and app-based system development
2) Verification and interviews with partners to improve UI
3) Research and invite external partners to improve service quality
1) Provide the Smart Data Platform to collect, accumulate, and analyze data related to recyclable resources
2) Analyze collected data
（4）Example of Partner Companies
Suppliers: Developers, shopping centers, apparel and retail business, and others
Users: Consumer goods manufacturers, printing companies, food businesses, and others
４．Future Development Plans
Based on the results of this trial, Sojitz, Recotech, NELCO, and NTT Com aim to commercialize this platform in the 2022 fiscal year. These four companies will conduct operation and management of this platform and will establish joint ventures within the next several years to further plans and proposals for using this platform in other fields outside the manufacturing industry.
※1：Recyclable resources: Plastics, textiles, and other resources that can be re-used.
※2：Circular economy: An economic system that limits waste generation and promotes recycling of finite resources.
※3：Material Pool System: A cloud-based platform that plots recyclable resource information on maps.
※4：Smart Data Platform: A platform providing a one-stop solution for data utilization (collecting, accumulating, and management analysis of data) that includes ICT infrastructure. The Smart Data Platform promotes DX through its innovative data utilization services. For further information, please visit NTT Com’s website.
※5：GOMiCO: A waste-managing app that records the type, volume, location, and other information regarding waste produced.
Company Overview –Sojitz Corporation
|Location||2-1-1 Uchisaiwaicho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo|
|Representative Director||Masayoshi Fujimoto|
|Main Business||General trading company|
Company Overview – Recotech Co., Ltd.
|Location||1-5-6 Kudan-Minami, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo|
|Representative Director||Ei Nozaki|
|Main Business||Development of a circular renewables platform; environmental consulting|
Company Overview – Nissho Electronics Corporation
|Location||3-5, Nibancho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Kojimachi Mitsuha Building
|Representative Director||Shinichi Teranishi|
|Main Business||Provider of information communications equipment, IT infrastructure, and other cutting-edge solutions both in Japan and around the world, as well as a provider of services such as system design and construction, maintenance, operation, and monitoring|
Company Overview – NTT Communications Corporation
|Location||2-3-1 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Otemachi Place West Tower
|Representative Director||Toru Maruoka|
|Main Business||Provider of data solutions for client DX and social needs; provider of ICT services and solutions to connect consumers, businesses, and society with new value|
[For questions regarding this press release, contact:]
Sojitz Corporation Public Relations Dept. +81－3－6871－3404
[For business inquiries, contact:]
Metals, Mineral Resources & Recycling Division
Resources Recycling Business Dept
Resources Circulation Business Section
Recotech Co., Ltd.
Nissho Electronics Corporation
Service Provider Business Division
Aoyama, Funakoshi, Akita
NTT Communications Corporation
Business Solution Division
Smart Factory Taskforce
Akahori, Suzuki, Ito