The board takes the floor

Stibat Services has had a successful year. With a collection percentage of 50.6 percent for portable batteries, the statutory target for 2019 was once more achieved. The collection of e-bike accumulators also shows an upwards trend. “These are great results. We did not expect anything else, since we are excellently organised both operationally and logistically.” “Our communication plays an important role in this as well. Consumers know where to find the over 25,000 Stibat collection points.” Dick Zwaveling (president, on the left) and Rob Lelieveld (treasurer) take the floor.

President swap

Dick Zwaveling is a new name in the Stibat ranks. He joined the board starting September 2019 and succeeded Laurens ten Horn as president in late December. “Laurens’ decades of commitment to Stibat are impressive, and his role at a European level is undeniable. As a connector and shaper of the cooperation between all national member organisations, for example.” Rob Lelieveld adds: “His efforts led to a valuable European framework, a beautiful collaboration. Speaking of which: the collaboration with our clients, Stichting Batterijen and Stichting EPAC is also going swimmingly. The lines of communication are short, and we get along well.”

“Sometimes, you just need to have the guts to take new roads. Without losing track of safety, of course”

Responsible, reliable and convincing

Rob Lelieveld: “In 2019, our focus was again on the collection and recycling of portable batteries and e-bike accumulators. Everything we do, we do to support our primary objectives. The fact that we manage confirms our right to exist and generates positive energy. Dick Zwaveling: “It’s not just what we do, but the way we do it. Responsible, reliable and convincing, those are the three Stibat core values that we recognise in our methods every day. At the same time, we want to remain agile as an organisation. More than ever before, we are coursing towards a circular economy with the entire chain, and developments occur in quick succession.” Rob Lelieveld adds: “That is why we need to remain well informed and adjust our service accordingly. Our clients can expect this from us. In addition, it is important to continue acting as a chain director. To make sure we continue to consciously and cleverly safeguard our position and added value.” Dick Zwaveling nods approvingly. “The crux of the matter is your license to operate. When we pick up batteries in cities, we do so in the most sustainable way possible. Not because we have to, but because this is an intrinsic choice.”

Sustainable and strategic choices

In 2019, the decentralised collection was fully implemented at a regional level, and this will be developed further in future. In addition, more and more electric trucks are used. These are sustainable and strategic choices. Dick Zwaveling: “In addition to lower CO2 emissions, this results in risk spreading and optimal costs. I think we owe this to our clients.” Rob Lelieveld agrees. “The lowest price is not the leading factor, by the way. What matters is the best price/quality ratio. The place we take our collected batteries influences the costs, but it has to fit within our core values.”

Have the guts

Rob Lelieveld: “In the coming years, an upwards trend in our collection percentage will continue to be an important goal. The key to achieving this is influencing the behaviour of all users of portable batteries and e-bike accumulators. Our campaigns and promotions have proven effective, so I have full confidence in this.” Dick Zwaveling: “2019 was also the year in which we started expanding our collection channels. With our new Batterij Bewaarbox Zakelijk (Business Battery Box), we now also cater to companies. A new target group and a new collection method: that can be quite exciting. Sometimes, you just need to have the guts to take new roads. Without losing track of safety, of course. That was done through proper instruction, safe collection methods and the punctual pickup of collected empty batteries.”

Maximum support

Rob Lelieveld: “When it comes to security, we fortunately have a lot of knowledge and capacity at our disposal. This is also important when it comes to discarded e-bike accumulators. We are always looking for new and improved ways of storing those, with the least possible impact on the primary process.” Dick Zwaveling: “We are always aware of the safety issue. We therefore exchange a lot of knowledge and experience with anyone for whom this is relevant. And, before we do anything, we always ask ourselves ‘does this contribute to the maximum support we offer our clients so they can realise their objectives and fulfil their obligations?’ In 2020, we are once more going to realise this.”