GreenCells has made it its mission to provide refurbished, discounted phones to consumers with the goal of eliminating harmful electronic waste.
GreenCells was founded in 2005 by Brian Moore and Jay Hines. Both had taken a traditional approach to business through work in consulting and engineering before starting their own business, Moore said.
However, traditional business didn’t satisfy their desire to work for the greater good.
“We just always felt we could do something more,” Moore said.
With that belief, Moore and Hines founded a company based on ideas of reuse and waste reduction. GreenCells provides a variety of refurbished phones for about half the price of a new device.
These phones range in sophistication from smart phones to those with basic features like calling and texting, Moore said.
He said many people are reluctant to purchase a previously owned phone. However, he emphasized that the company makes up for this hesitation with several customer service features.
GreenCells offers free shipping, a free 33-day money-back guarantee and a one-year warranty.
“We try to make the offer better than new,” Moore said.
GreenCells also offers a “trade-in/trade-up” program, which allows customers to exchange their used phones for cash.
The idea of reusing cellular phones resonates well with college students, Moore said. Unlike older people, who might be interested in a “green” lifestyle because of guilt based on a lifetime of wastefulness, Moore has found that the younger generation lives it automatically.
“There’s a level where green just became a given – it’s not work, it’s not really a choice, it’s just something you incorporate into your life,” Moore said.
Freshman Natalie Piontek said she’d be willing to purchase a GreenCells phone as long as it worked as well as a new phone.
“Anything that would help the environment would be good,” Piontek said.
GreenCells operates with the ultimate goal of creating a “greener” way of life. Their small-scale goal is to eliminate harmful electronic waste, which is often shipped to third-world countries where it can cause pollution, Moore said.
Their long-term goal is to inspire a new market.
“It’d be really exciting if this thing catches on,” Moore said, “and we can open up a greener market for reuse.”
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