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The Department for International Trade: Techbuyer Presents its Business Journey to Net Zero

Charlie Collett, Content Marketing Coordinator Mar 30, 2021

Techbuyer team members were invited to speak in the ‘Your Business Journey to Net Zero’ webinar hosted by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Within this government organisation is the Department for International Trade, which helps UK businesses to trade overseas. Simon Crosby, Senior International Trade Advisor at DIT ran the session.

Crosby explained that exporting helps to improve profitability, generate faster business growth, and improve competitiveness for today’s UK businesses. However, with these benefits comes an environmental cost: business travel represents as much as 50% of a company’s carbon footprint. How can today’s businesses keep attracting customers overseas whilst contributing to a sustainable economy?

Our Sustainability Lead, Astrid Wynne and COO, Mick Payne shared insight on how exporting and innovation can come together, and why circularity makes both business and environmental sense.

A global company with a local approach

Techbuyer has a circular business model. By buying, refurbishing and selling IT equipment, we extend the life cycle of technology and provide a sustainable, cost-effective alternative to new. Refurbished technology provides the same performance as new, as proved by recent research with the University of East London.

The company originated in Harrogate, UK in 2005 which is still Techbuyer’s largest HQ. Over the past five years we have been expanding internationally and won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade in 2020. Mick Payne stated that “providing excellent customer service in every site has been key to our growth”. So too is investing in employees, developing internal training, and getting involved in local community projects.

Exporting during Covid-19

During the pandemic, we saw an interesting shift in the IT industry. As the supply chain of new equipment experienced shortages between March and July 2020 and manufacturers struggled to keep up with demand, we welcomed an 85% increase in customers. The vast majority of these customers bought refurbished; 92% of whom would feel very confident buying refurbished again.

This was a great opportunity to prove that refurbished technology performs as well as new. It also emphasised that the materials our IT hardware is made from are running out, and that circular approaches are crucial for future-proofing the industry.

Exporting and innovation

In the question and answer session at the end of the webinar, Astrid and Mick discussed how innovation, exporting and circularity all go together.

“One of the things we’ve noticed as part of the secondary market is that we come across problems that have never been solved before,” said Astrid. “The key is finding partnerships and building relationships with other experts in the sector to get around this. For instance, we’ve been discussing carbon emissions with couriers who are very proactive in this area, and developing our own form of sustainable packaging with our local supplier.”

If you registered for the event, the webinar is available to watch here.


Techbuyer is an IT solutions provider with seven locations across Europe, the US and Asia Pacific. We extend the life cycle of IT equipment by buying, refurbishing, upgrading, repairing or selling it. Get in touch with us today to see how we could help your business.