Our startup stories now give us an approach to Venezuelan startup REDIR, one of the 14 projects chosen in the spheres of health, water, cleaning up and hygiene, to participate in Idear Soluciones, the event organized by the Inter-American Development Bank. We sat down with Mauro Torres, president of REDIR, who talked about the creation and development of this logistic platform, which targets the optimized urban refuse collection, joins efforts with companies, NGOs and citizens.

When was REDIR created and what were its goals?

REDIR came up as an idea back in February 2013, when it was named plan red sictep, as a result of previous researches carried out in the waste and recycling management area. The present objectives aim at internationalizing the startup, locating a business angel interested in investing in the biggest global network of virtual recycling, which is going to change the way wastes are perceived and improve the whole interface. We’re innovating these days, since we have a world of information to facilitate the incursion in Latin American markets next year.

As strict objectives, we want to smartly manage recyclable wastes by means of a multiplatform. As general goals we have: developing the systematization of the multiplatform with updated layers in terms of programming, interface and module architecture; adjusting operators through the standardization of the service for the correct use of the platform; fostering online recycling by turning wastes into economic resources and strengthening the implementation of the multiplatform with public and private alliances aimed at the development of products and services.

How does the startup work?

REDIR service software is a virtual platform devoted to the management and recycling of wastes, thus capitalizing the recycling capacity of citizens by using technologies to simplify the recovery of raw materials out of wastes. The service is operated online and backed up by the local recycling installed capacity.

Our business strategy targets cooperation and absorption, so we make the most of the installed capacity in the traditional recycling market to create its own virtual market and business community at multilevel.

Which have been the most significant results?

I believe that experience is what matters the most, as well as knowledge and information. These elements have helped us correct failures on the Multilevel Recycling Multiplatform. Hope is another great achievement. As you see, we’re in Venezuela and having our startup come up in the middle of uncertainty is a good thing. We’ve also won some recognitions and awards, which give us strength to go on and show that we’re doing things right.

What are your plans for the rest of the year and 2017?

We look forward to consolidating the network in Latin America. It’s not only about offering, giving and delivering our solution as one of the best choices in the market, but also contributing with knowledge to receive capital and support networks needed in cities and municipalities that lack of such system as ours.

What’s the importance of being ranked among the 14 startups for Idear Soluciones Mejorar Vida 2016?

I believe that being there shows perseverance. The REDIR team won’t stop until this startup gets to the top. We think there’s a lot to be done and we have the tools to do it.

How do you like the startup ecosystem in Venezuela?

It’s strong. The competition is high in traditional sectors; however, the innovation area has been left behind due to the situation of the country.

What tips would you share with other startups?

I believe we’re living the best moment to innovate and undertake projects. We have the Internet, we have a world of markets, and different funding sources, which are hard to reach but we know they are out there. I’m still looking for one of them to make a significant contribution, but the truth is that, if you want to launch your project, you have to go out and sell the idea. You’re doing great if they buy it, otherwise, you have to innovate because that idea could go in a wrong direction, but it could finally become the next million-dollar company. Perseverance is a key element. These things don’t happen overnight.

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