Canadian Manufacturing

Do you know where your manufacturing equipment ends up?

Loopcycle is a product traceability platform that keeps track of manufacturing equipment so the OEM has the chance to repair, refurbish and resell it at the end of its life.

January 19, 2022   by CM Staff

Loopcycle is helping manufacturers like Ecofast create a more domestic supply chain of parts and equipment

All manufacturers know who their clients are, but they seldom know what happens to the equipment and machinery at the ends of its lifecycle. Is it recycled, refurbished, resold or just thrown out?

This is the question that Lugano Kapembwa, Co-Founder and CEO, set out to answer when he started Loopcycle in the U.K. Loopcycle is a product traceability platform that keeps track of manufacturing equipment so the OEM has the chance to repair, refurbish and resell it at the end of its life. Loopcycle started in the U.K. but was recently a part of a 4-month virtual residency through the MaRS incubator program to help advanced manufacturers scale up in Canada and access the North American market.

When asked about how Loopcycle was founded, and how much of their focus is based on sustainability, Lugano was candid.

“Systems and supply chains have always fascinated me. I noticed that in the manufacturing supply chain, there wasn’t a lot of transparency in terms of how manufacturing equipment was being recycled or how the system was sustainable. So, we set out to create a transparent supply chain to try and make manufacturing more sustainable.”

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Lugano elucidated on a key challenge that faces manufacturers beginning to ask the question about where their equipment ends up.

“Currently, OEMs have no idea where their equipment ends up, but we’re trying to extend the lifetime of equipment and parts and create a resale market. We currently have a manufacturer of oven equipment, Electrolux Professional, using our platform to refurbish and resell their equipment when it’s at the end of its lifecycle.”

One of the other major benefits of Loopcycle’s transparency program are the supply chain benefits in being able to trace a product from beginning to end via unique, individual SKUs that Loopcycle tags on everything.

“We connect a manufacturer’s ERP to our platform and tag all products with a unique code that follows that equipment anywhere in the world and the manufacturer will always know where it is. When the operator finally releases that product, whether it’s to a recycling plant, the resale market or something else, the manufacturer will have first refusal to take it back or intervene.” Lugano says.

Lugano also mentioned that there was a heightened interest in having Loopcycle record the maintenance records of all equipment so potential buyers could see the reliability of a manufacturer’s machines and equipment.

All of this is intended to convince manufacturers to have more trust in second-hand goods. Because it’s a manufacturer-supervised marketplace, manufacturers are more inclined to trust this market and help ease supply chain pressures through relying on a transparent cycle of products that are a little closer to home.

Loopcycle is currently working with companies like Electrolux Professional and EcoFast Environmental to ease pressures on their supply chain for equipment and create a more sustainable working environment.

In North America, Loopcycle is trying to expand into food manufacturing which is an industry they’re most comfortable with, and have entered into conversations with a number of U.S. manufacturers interested in creating a more domestic and circular supply chain to reduce equipment costs and improve sustainability.

Lugano Kapembwa’s Loopcycle continues try and bring its platform to North American manufacturers, navigating diverse regulatory measures and guidelines to a market that is in need of supply chain and procurement specialists.