WSJ spotlights Recellular's rise to top of electronic recycling market

When it comes to refurbishing and reconditioning cellphones, tablets, e-readers, and iPads, Dexter-based Recellular dominates the market. Yeah, old news to Concentrate readers. Nice to see the Wall Street Journal finally catch up.


"Until recently, the privately owned company acquired phones only in bulk, getting them from charities that held collection drives and retailers or others with returned merchandise. Now ReCellular advertises on cable TV that it is willing to buy phones one at a time from individuals via the Web site.

ReCellular projects that its revenue will grow more than 50% in 2011 from $66 million in 2010. It has raised $20 million of capital from private-equity firms over the past two years.

Global sales of used phones total a few hundred million units a year, estimates Andy Castonguay, an analyst at consulting firm Yankee Group. That compares with the 1.6 billion new phones sold world-wide last year, he says.

Though a few used-cellphone dealers have been around for decades, the business is expanding now because today's most advanced "smart" phones are costlier to begin with and can fetch hundreds of dollars even after a year or more of use. Meanwhile, a weak economy encourages thrift, and some people seek out simpler phones made years ago to avoid having to learn new routines."

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Related Company

  • ReCellular
    2555 Bishop Circle West
    Dexter, MI 48130 Website
    How does more than 300% growth sound? Dexter-based ReCellular --a recycler, refurbisher and reseller of discarded cell phones-- employed 170 people last year. Today they have 500. With anticipated revenue increases of 50% and inherently 'green' ...