A new waste startup is trying to do things differently.
Unlike the huge companies that dominate the industry-like Waste Management, which owns hundreds of landfills along with its fleets of garbage trucks-startup Rubicon Global is a waste consultant, rather than a company that actually picks up trash.
Rubicon gets paid in part by how much it’s able to recycle, not how much ends up in a landfill.
They work with large businesses with large volumes of trash, and part of their job involves searching for unusual markets for that waste.
The startup also helps businesses save money by connecting them with a network of local haulers who compete on price to pick up waste.
“We saw brokers as lowering the price but not solving the problem, which was ultimately how to find alternative uses and keep the waste out of the landfill,” says Lane Moore, co-founder and executive chairman of Rubicon Global.
If someone learns exactly how much leftover pizza dough is going in landfills, for example, that might inspire the next startup.