As part of the efforts towards actualizing a safe planet and maximizing available limited resources, several countries of the world have taken special interest in recycling batteries. Already, private companies, individual businesspersons and governments across the world are generating massive yields from commercializing battery recycling yet it still holds lot of promise for the global economy.
In the third quarter of 2020, the battery recycling market was placed at $17.2 billion and has been estimated to grow to about $23.2 billion by 2025 at a CAGR of 6.1%. The anticipated rapid growth will expectedly be driven by the quest for a cleaner and safer environment as well as the need to conserve resources for production of batteries. At the moment, the United States, China, South Korea, Japan, India and European countries account for the largest volumes of battery recycled annually. These countries are expected to remain at the forefront of the battery recycling market with very slight alterations.
Nigeria remains one of the most active nations involved in battery recycling in the entire West African region. Although there are reports that only one major lead battery recycling plant is functional in the country, Nigeria recycles about 13% of the batteries used in the country. Compared to the major battery recycling countries, the rate appears insignificant but it goes a long way to establish the $223 million (₦85 b) market and poise it for greater focus both by private investors and the state.
In essence, if granted more attention than it enjoys at the moment, the battery recycling industry in Nigeria and Africa as a whole will experience a significant boost. If youre planning to delve into the battery recycling industry, here is a guide to help you.
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What Is A Battery?
A battery is a simple electrochemical device that contains cells with chemical reactions that can power electronic devices. Such devices include mobile phones, vehicles, torchlights, radio, UPS and several others.
What Is A Battery Recycling Business?
A battery recycling business describes all activities involved in repurposing the different parts of batteries – metals, chemicals and plastics – that would have otherwise been disposed as solid municipal waste. The process includes collection, sorting and further processing batteries into new battery products.
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Business Opportunities In Battery Recycling In Nigeria And Across The World
1). Battery Waste Collection:
The most basic business opportunity involved in any recycling business is the actual scouting and collection of waste battery. Batteries have a short lifespan and are soon dumped after a short use. The recycling process starts with visiting electronics shops, repairshops, and other related spots. In most towns, battery collection businesses engage the services of young men to collect scrap batteries, sometimes in exchange for tokens.
2). Battery Waste Sorting And Processing:
There are several battery types, ranging from the common lead acid batteries to the lithium-ion batteries and NiMH, among others. These battery types have different values on the battery recycling market. Sorting them out, packaging and further processing the batteries require a team of trained personnel.
3). Distribution And Export Services:
Where battery recycling companies are unavailable, battery collectors have to take their collected scrap batteries to the international market. This is the point where export firms come onto the scene. They network with foreign recycling companies to get the best rates for collected scrap batteries.
4). Safety Kit Production:
Batteries contain highly toxic chemicals which require care when handled. Battery collectors as well as those who sort and package use special safety kit and materials. The production of such materials provides paychecks for the personnel involved.
5). Repair And Maintenance Services:
Battery recycling involves the use of certain equipment such as filter presses, evaporation system, etc. which need regular checkup and maintenance services for optimal performance.
Facts And Benefits Of Battery Recycling
- Recycling batteries is a way of recovering and conserving batteries.
- It keeps the environment free of harmful chemical substances.
- Recycling batteries reduces land and sea pollution.
- It reduces fire incidences.
- The United States, China, South Korea, Japan, India and European countries account for the largest volumes of battery recycled annually.
- Batteries get quickly damaged when they are exposed to extreme temperature.
- The battery on the first cell phone ever provided only twenty minutes of talk time before it died.
- Batteries come in various sizes but the most common ones are AAA, AA, C and D.
- Potatoes and lemons have been confirmed as sources of battery power.
- The batteries used in rechargeable lamps are known as alkaline batteries.
- A rechargeable battery will eventually burn out to the point that it can no more be recharged.
- The battery types used mainly in portable home phones and electronics are the NiMH batteries.
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Types Of Batteries
1). Primary Batteries:
The primary batteries are non-rechargeable and can be used for only one spell, after which they become useless and can only be repurposed to produce new items. They are used mainly in toys, wristwatches, calculators, radios, lights, torchlights, microphones, etc. Common examples are Magnesium, Alkaline, Silver and Lithium among others.
2). Secondary Batteries:
Secondary batteries are rechargeable after they burn out. They can also be used as storage devices for storing power. These are the battery types used in mobile phones, rechargeable lamps, Uninterrupted Power Supplies, electric vehicles, laptops, etc. The major battery types in this category include Nickel-Cadium, Lithium-Ion, Lead-Acid and Nickel-Metal Hydrae batteries, among others.
How To Start A Battery Recycling Business In Nigeria: A Step-By-Step Guide
1). Write A Comprehensive Business Plan:
The success of any business depends, in part, in the plans outlined from the start. This is why you need to pay close attention to the depth of your business plan. It also goes far in influencing how much financial aids or partnership you will get in support of your business.
2). Get A Suitable Business Site:
It helps to site your business in the heart of industrial activities. For a battery recycling company, you do not need much facilities, especially if you focus on collection and selling to foreign-based recycle factories.
3). Choose A Particular Battery Type:
Focus your business on a particular battery type. Batteries are more valuable than one another. At the moment, lead-acid batteries are the most valuable on the battery market. For ease and greater profits, it is advisable to focus on one type of battery.
4). Register Your Business:
In addition to registering your business as a legal business entity, you should also register with the state battery recycling body.
5). Identify Your Target Market:
This is the point where you determine the scope of your business. Who are your intended sources of batteries? The decision here largely depends on the type of battery you intend to deal in. Your targets could include automotive companies, electrical shops or mobile phone repairers.
6). Outline A Collection Plan:
This is a simple method for collecting unused batteries from your sources. It could be a simple setup as leaving a collection box in their offices or have the batteries delivered to your company on a fixed basis.
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Challenges Of Battery Recycling Business In Nigeria
- Unavailability of battery recycling plants in Nigeria.
- Difficulty in getting valuable scrap batteries.
- Fluctuation in market prices of batteries.
- Unfavourable international trade policies.
- Difficulty in reaching the international market.
- Irregularity in currency exchange values.
- Low government support.
- Distrust between exporters and battery waste collection companies.
- Lack of financial support or loan structure for investors.
- Poor attitude towards recycling in the country.
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To Sum It Up
A battery recycling business in Nigeria or any other part of Africa is a business with high prospects, granted that there is still relatively very low competition in the industry. The battery recycling business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your ability to build a wide network. If youre looking for a lucrative business to venture into, the battery recycling business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.
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