Info 225 Are you ready to join the Circular Economy?

Page 52

The CIRCULAR ECONOMY around the world 17 months, 22 countries and over 100 circular economy initiatives. For entrepreneurs, Jules Coignard and Raphaël Masvigner, this is a world tour with a difference – its aim being to find the most interesting initiatives and show that a large-scale environmentally friendly business model is possible. Aurore Largerie skyped Jules en route in Columbia…


hared environmental concerns led Jules and Raphaël to

started their world tour in London at the Resource Event, where

quit their jobs at Airbus in Mexico in 2014 to launch a non-

they introduced their project. As recent graduates from Toulouse

profit initiative called Circul’R. To kick it off, they raised funds,

Business School and Sciences Po, they are giving conferences at

gathered partners and embarked on their journey. Financial

universities en route, their first was held at the London School

partners are covering the team’s living and travelling expenses,

of Economics. They are also raising public awareness through

while others are providing them with support in kind: Air France

social media, articles, and video blogs on their website.

with some flights, AccorHotels with some accommodation,

‘The circular economy is quite a new concept to the general

Generali with insurance and Patagonia with clothing, to name

public, but if you think about it, it’s using natural resources

a few. Institutional partners such as Ashoka, the leading global

smartly and not producing waste. Humankind has been doing

network of social entrepreneurs, and the Institute of Circular

it for thousands of years. It’s only since the Industrial Revolution

Economy in France, are connecting them with some projects.

that we’ve changed the way we do things,’ says Jules.

The pair also launched a crowdfunding campaign, reaching

The worldwide network they have been setting up while

130% of the target, which amounted to 10% of the world tour

travelling aims to connect circular economy actors so that they

budget. But more importantly, it generated additional value by

can share best practice and even work together. For example,

gathering a community around their initiative.

in India, Circul’R connected AccorHotels to Goonj, a social

On the road since March 2015, the two entrepreneurs

enterprise that hires people in poverty and provides them with

Goonj hires people in poverty from rural India and provides them with basic resources for their work such as textiles 50 - info - july / august 2016

Jules Coignard and Raphaël Masvigner