Octopus is one of our portfolio companies from Indonesia, with a mission to redefine waste recycling. Plastic waste and landfill management prove to be serious issues in Indonesia, given how more than 7.8 million tons of plastic waste is generated annually, with more than half of it being mismanaged. There is a severe lack of services catering to this need for waste management as well - there are limited collection services and access to disposal infrastructure, forcing those in areas with limited access to these services to dispose of their waste in less than ideal ways, such as directly to water bodies. Needless to say, this has incredibly detrimental effects on the environment.
In line with our theme of Sustainability for the month, here are some ways that Octopus helps mitigate these issues of waste management in Indonesia. Apart from limiting plastic waste in water bodies, Octopus also helps to reduce carbon footprints at a significant level, with their collection methods able to bring down the carbon footprint to 80%.
Octopus also helps bring about social good. They’ve created new jobs for unemployed workers and increased the livelihood of local waste collectors. Waste collection businesses also stand to benefit - apart from collecting higher quality plastic materials, they also have standardized measurements for pricing and quality and better access to bank loans. Through this business model, women also have lower barriers to entry to employment, with 49% of workers in the Octopus ecosystem being women.