November 1 2019  |  Industry News

Concourse signs up to ECOR x DSM-Niaga circular coalition as a commitment to drive sustainability in travel retail

By Hibah Noor


During the TFWA World Exhibition and Conference in Cannes, Concourse exhibited in the Innovation Lab featuring NiagaECOR panels in the design and build of its stand to introduce the material to clients and industry executives

During Dutch Design Week 2019 on Friday, October 25 in Eindhoven, Concourse was present at the signing of a Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) to formalize an alliance with ECOR and DSM-Niaga. This marks an official partnership whereby Concourse will now be introducing The NiagaECOR circular panel as a sustainable material in the design and implementation process of brand activation and store builds in the global travel retail industry.

Concourse provides a unique implementation service that is 100% dedicated to global travel retail. The company is a firm advocate for a sustainable approach in the implementation of retail furniture within travel retail and the need for a migration to a circular economy to achieve this.

At the same time, DSM-Niaga scientists and engineers redesign everyday products from scratch, making them healthier and fully recyclable without compromising on performance whilst ECOR offers healthy materials for interior, furniture, and exhibition solutions. Together these companies are now working in partnership to drive the use of NiagaECOR cellulose panels in travel retail displays and store fit outs to replace the use of non-recyclable materials such as MDF.

During the TFWA World Exhibition and Conference in Cannes, Concourse exhibited in the Innovation Lab featuring NiagaECOR panels in the design and build of its stand to introduce the material to clients and industry executives. Chris Morriss, Managing Director, Concourse, also served as a speaker for the Innovation in Action Workshop, focusing on sustainability opportunities for the TR industry.

Morriss comments: “We have been working on innovation and education when it comes to sustainable brand activation, store implementation and what happens at the end of a display asset’s lifecycle. Through research and many discussions with our clients (both brand and retailer), as well as industry associations and sustainable manufacturers, we have been working relentlessly on identifying alternative raw materials and how to incorporate these into asset design. With DSM-Niaga and ECOR, we have found an incredibly innovative solution, with such inspiring partners, to take our sustainability aims forward with our brand clients, and we are already in many discussions and early project stages to initiate this positive change in the TR industry.”

With regards to the signing of the MoU to represent the official partnership alliance, a representative of ECOR says: “Radical transparency and disruptive change require courage. It’s a collective effort bonding all players in a value chain to the same cause. Our partners are paramount in taking responsibility for a growing societal waste problem by promoting our vision for circularity and using our shared experience, science, talent and creativity to deliver solutions.

We owe gratitude to our allies who are willing to challenge the status quo, boldly and courageously. That’s why we’re excited to announce collaboration with new partners teaming up to use NiagaECOR panels…(the) panels are made of cellulose materials, heat, pressure and water to create a range of fully recyclable, healthy alternatives to MDF particleboard, fiberboard & foam board. They are a sustainable alternative to traditional furniture panels that cannot be reused, have no circular value and end up as waste after use. Our panels enable furniture production with a business case for recycling.”

This latest movement by Concourse highlights their commitment to put the need for sustainability at the forefront of the design and implementation process and follows on from other sustainable initiatives already introduced by the company. For nearly a decade, they have encouraged their clients to work with their Triple R Strategy (Re-design, Re-dress, Re-use) for existing display assets and committed to recycle or reuse 40% of all retail fixtures by 2022.

Earlier this year, Concourse also launched ReStore – a sustainable CSR-led initiative developed to focus on reducing the amount of retail furniture, fixtures and merchandising that end up in landfill sites. This initiative identifies projects and charities that can benefit from travel retail’s unwanted retail displays and provides a dedicated service to collect, repurpose and recycle old materials into new and worthwhile pieces of furniture that can meet other charities’ needs.

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