The first guest speakers to present to the 2017 class were Carlos Kouri and Matías Arellano, both of them members of the batch and of the ESADE E&E board.
Carlos, founded in 2008 a plastic recycling company named KNR Recycling, in his native city, Lima, Perú. The company recycled discarded plastic bottle tops and up-cycling them into 100% recycled and recyclable core-tray boxes for exploration and mining, offering the industry a sustainable solution. In the collection process the company articulated social initiatives that benefited disabled people and was in the process of certificating the company as a “B-CORP”. Because of the downturns in the mining industry, in 2014 KNR Recycling suffered a full re-engineering process affecting its business model and continues supplying the sector with a responsible and sustainable alternative for core-sample management.
Matías, originally from Chile, founded ACERASA, a company that recycled metal in order to sell steal produced from metal scrap, generally overseas. The company went through a rough time with the drop in commodity prices but was able to reconvert and flourish. It is still working, generating wanton profits and having an overarching positive environmental impact.
Their enriching experiences provide an irrefutable example of responsible business practices and how capitalism and sustainability can couple and thrive. Moreover, they gave us a glimpse of how being a Green entrepreneur means having to go through rough patches, which are can be overcome with resilience, persistence and a strong belief in our own guiding principles.