TES-AMM is an international waste recovery group, founded in Singapore in June 2005 and currently operating in more than 20 countries around the world. TES-AMM’s Australian branch was established in 2006, and has since quickly expanded its operations in Australia and New Zealand. Currently operating out of sites in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Auckland, TES-AMM Australia’s growth has been primarily based on the provision of resource recovery services to the information and communications technology industry, with a focus on the recycling of electronic waste, and its associated liabilities. This market focus combined with the prioritization of the security, compliance, and positive environmental outcomes of their operations has seen TES-AMM enjoy rapid and successful growth across the country.
By working closely with their clients, TES-AMM is able to deliver customized solutions for their needs on an individual basis, offering a one-stop-shop solution from the secure chain of custody collection of equipment, assets and material, through to the end disposal of the resultant waste of such materials. These services involve secure collection, manual disassembly, destruction, recycling, final disposal, and in-house precious metal recovery within environmentally friendly facilities equipped with control systems that prevent the release of harmful emissions into the atmosphere.
As a waste recovery business, TES-AMM is committed to the implementation of sustainable practices throughout their business. “I think being a sustainable organization is very much about being a leader, setting a good example in being economically, environmentally, and socially responsible,” says Alvin Piadasa, TES-AMM Australia’s Managing Director. Taking a holistic view of their responsibilities, TES-AMM strives to ensure their customers have access to the best possible services, outcomes, technology and systems. “That involvement is something that we need to lead industry and set an example for.”
Amongst the various national projects, TES-AMM are involved in “Take Back Programs” for end of life items such as printer cartridges, mobile phones, batteries and of course electronic waste from commercial and consumer channels. “What TES does is integrate all solutions together,” Alvin explains, “from the collection aspects to the end disposal with full traceability.”
TES-AMM views product stewardship of televisions, computers and other related end of life products as a major area of focus for the future. ”I think it’s something critical to our continued involvement in the South Pacific region,” says Piadasa. Our priorities also include a focus on extending services that embrace the recycling hierarchy of reuse and recycling. Doing so will enable TES-AMM to continue to offer a broad suite of end of life solutions.
One of TES-AMM Australia’s greatest achievements has been their ability to be transparent in how and where they recycle electronic waste. We are the only recycler that possesses in-house capability to recover precious metals from electronic equipment at its Singapore facilities. TES-AMM has also been successful where all others had previously failed to open the channel to export and responsibly dispose of Cathode Ray Tube Glass out of old televisions and computer monitors to the United Kingdom. The world first process developed by Nulife Glass and Sweeep Kuusakoski is the only known technology that can separate lead from leaded CRT glass. TES-AMM has been successful in obtaining a hazardous waste export permit to send such problem material for safe and environmentally sound recycling complying with Australia’s international obligations under the Basel Convention.
Best practice is important and to this extent TES-AMM is highly certified to international standards of quality, environment and health and safety. Additionally in Australia, we are the only recycler with R2 (Responsible Recycler) Accreditation across all our facilities. R2 is a robust certification developed by the US EPA specifically for the e-waste recycling industry.
Building strong relationships is important for TES-AMM’s business. “Whoever we come into contact with, it is important that we value that relationship, whether it’s with suppliers, industry groups or clients,” Piadasa explains. “It gives us the ability to be able to influence and be known for standards, ethics and values.” Relationships provide TES-AMM the opportunity to engage all stakeholders and cooperatively assist with maintaining standards and quality. “We need to also ensure that we have a voice for the industry in representing its needs and addressing issues with government and other groups. “We value our interactions,” Alvin continues. “It is very much a case of doing the right thing and expecting reciprocal treatment back.”
Alvin fears that the National Product Stewardship Program for televisions and computers is fast becoming too competitive with there now being 5 arrangements signed up to represent liable parties. “Competition can detract from the spirit of the Act because commercial interests often take precedence over social and environmental goals.” Piadasa believes that a genuine effort must be made to truly embrace resource recovery in the most effective manner possible. “It just ensures that, in the long term, we sustain ourselves in being able to provide true closed loop solutions for what we might do that ensures we have a place and an on-going role to play in taking care of the environment.
Originally from a business development background in the financial services industry in Singapore, Alvin founded TES-AMM Australia and New Zealand in 2006. Initially, with a relatively young and inexperienced local team in an equally young industry, Alvin has had the satisfaction of developing lives and careers in what is an exciting industry still very much seeing exponential growth. The steps forward that the company has taken in terms of establishing its position as a best of breed recycling service provider coupled with its relationships with people forms a simple reason to exist and prosper. “If we continue to be responsible corporate citizens and individuals we ensure our success and the success of society too.”