Unusual Rigging makes the finals of the prestigious Circulars Awards

2nd December 2016

Unusual Rigging has been nominated as a finalist in the prestigious Circulars Awards. The Circulars - an initiative of the World Economic Forum and the Forum of Young Global Leaders, is the world's premier circular economy award programme, and aims to recognise individuals and organisations that have made notable contributions to the circular economy in the private sector, public sector and society. Entrants to the awards are leading the way in driving innovation and growth that is decoupled from the use of scarce natural resources. In 2015, Unusual Rigging was highly commended for its efforts - this year the company has beaten thousands of other entries to make it into the top six in the 'Young Global Leaders Award for Circular Economy SME' category.

Tom Harper, resource manager for Unusual said." Unusual Rigging has been providing technical solutions to the live production and entertainment industry for over 30 years. Last year's commendation by the award panellists, encouraged us to continue our transition towards a fully circular business model, and our efforts have paid dividends. It is very exciting to be selected as a finalist this year. Not only does it encourage us, but we hope to inspire a vast middle ground of medium sized businesses - within the entertainment industry and beyond - demonstrating that circularity isn't just feasible for established businesses, but also preferable as a new model of service provision."

Last year, the judges commented on Unusual's entry: “The judging panel were extremely impressed by the entry, in particular the details around how you are helping embed new industries within the closed loop arena.”

Unusual's efforts have seen the company creating, capturing and distributing value through three core innovations:
  • resource recovery: Recover useful resources / energy out of disposed products or by-products
  • product life extension: Extend working lifecycle of products and components by repairing, upgrading and reselling
  • product as a service: Provide Extended producer responsibility to internalise benefits of circular resource productivity. 

Tom added: "We have been applying RFID to all our assets, and in 2016 we started tracking our clients' equipment too, enabling predictive maintenance and therefore, better service provision. All of this is helping us to evolve beyond a rental system, that has been historically efficient at managing material loops towards an optimised circular system that is effective at closing material loops."

Under the Unusual model, more than 50 tonnes worth of 'technical nutrients' have been reused in the past year alone and CO2 emissions have been reduced by over 60% comparative to the previous year. The company has also committed to running on renewables at its main site in Northamptonshire.

The winners of the Circulars will be announced in January after entries have been considered by an esteemed judging panel, which includes the likes of Alan Murray, Editor of Fortune magazine, Ellen MacArthur, founder of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and Del Hudson, Innovation scale and partnerships - Nike.

Alan Jacobi, managing director, Unusual Rigging commented: "We are extremely proud that our efforts are being recognised by the Circulars. Our investment into promoting a circular economy within our business model is invaluable - not only are we helping ourselves in the material and energy savings we have been able to capture, but equally we are able to pass these savings onto our customers. Our reputation has been enhanced as our industry learns that applying circular innovations does not decrease - but significantly optimises and creates further shared value."

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