“It’s all about relationships” • Recycling International

Recycling International regularly highlights individual scrap metal traders around the world. Here we give the floor to Rom Patel, senior trader at e-waste recycler Igneo.


“Never a dull moment in electronics recycling, I would say. There are so many developments affecting WEEE and our industry. Energy prices, freight and compliance are among the main drivers today. Watch also what happens with reuse and repair My mobile operator upgraded my phone, which happens every two years, to iPhone 14 in the UK so that my old iPhone could be recycled. But on a recent trip to South Africa, my taxi driver was very happy with his refurbished iPhone 6 that he runs his business on and he’s probably not the only one.


“At Igneo, we are busy rolling out big projects. The recent majority investment agreement with precious and non-ferrous metals smelter Korea Zinc will further strengthen our global growth strategy with rapid expansion of furnace capacity and gathering infrastructure. In the United States, as well as in Europe and beyond.


“The scrap business is all about relationships. Not being able to meet people face to face was quite frustrating for all of us. At the same time, for me personally, the pandemic has presented opportunities. I received many calls from potential clients: “Hey Rom, help us, we are looking for business, what can you do for us?” So it’s definitely a tough time, but certainly not just bad news.


“A trip every two weeks on average. October was a bit of an exception, with 12 flights in four weeks to Finland, Sweden, Norway, Romania, Czech Republic, South Africa and finally Dubai for the BIR lounge. Living in London, LME week was a home game for me, luckily. I really love traveling for work, but it’s also great to come home from a trip and watch my son play football and hear my daughter play the piano.


‘The Mira Hotel in Hong Kong. It has an indoor pool that plays music underwater and a nice side terrace with pubs and restaurants. Excellent service and the good thing is that the staff know their customers by name. They’re really attentive: “Hello Mr. Patel, welcome back.” Great hospitality while traveling!’


“Traveling the world and building good relationships, knowing that I’m making a difference through urban mining. Moreover, in this profession, you are not on the tourist trail. You have the chance to see different places and learn about local cultures.

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