Published 3 years ago.
About a 3 minute read.
In partnership with major brands and small business owners, Algramo gives consumers a better way to refill household-name cleaning products from through a cost effective, smart dispensing system.
Today, Algramo — a Chile-based startup
eliminating product packaging waste through its refill machines for staple
household products, “by the gram” — has launched its first United
States-based refill vending machine pilots in multiple locations across New
York City. The pilots represent the first step in Algramo’s expansion into
North America; and will provide invaluable insights to accelerate the next
generation of modern, convenient, environmentally and cost-conscious refill
systems that advance the future of retail.
Reusable packaging is a critical part of building a more circular
Algramo’s refill system also allows customers to purchase cleaning products at
an affordable price — making the sustainable option more affordable, equitable
“Algramo is on the forefront of a new retail experience; their tech-enabled
refill system optimizes the customer experience and meets the growing demand
from customers for convenient, accessible and waste-free solutions,” says
Bridget Croke, Algramo Board Member and Managing Director at Closed Loop
Partners, which is bringing Algramo to the US. “We are seeing a lot of market
demand for this solution.”
Algramo launched in Chile in 2012 with a goal of solving an often-overlooked
problem impacting millions of low-resource families in South America and beyond:
the poverty tax — a market failure that occurs when under-resourced consumers
buy products in smaller, more “affordable” formats and end up paying up to 40
percent more for products. Through a partnership with
for the South American market, Algramo solves the poverty tax with a combination
store-based and mobile vending service that enables families to buy the exact
quantity of products they need at bulk prices. The service already operates in
over 2,000 family-owned stores that reach over 325,000 end-customers in
Santiago, Chile. This year, Algramo expanded to the US and was selected to join
Newlab’s Circular City
Studio — which empowers urban
tech startups to help make New York more equitable, livable, and resilient.
For its US pilots, Algramo has partnered with Clorox and
scale up the zero-waste distribution of common household cleaning and personal
“Colgate-Palmolive has committed to eliminate plastic waste by designing and
delivering circular and alternative solutions for our products,” says Emily
Fong Mitchell, General Manager of Personal Care North America at
Colgate-Palmolive. “We are excited to partner with Algramo on this pilot as we
work to achieve our ambition.”
The various Algramo refill systems will dispense cleaning products including
Clorox Splash-less Cleaning Bleach and Pine-Sol Multi-Surface Cleaner,
Softsoap Liquid Hand Soap, and hand sanitizer from EcoLogic
Solutions — starting at Essex
Market in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Building
77 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard and The Laundry
in BK beginning this month,
with a goal of expanding throughout the city and beyond.
Algramo is working to optimize customer experience, cost competitiveness and
ease of integration at small businesses, while showing a measurable reduction of
waste. The business model is likely to appeal to more discerning New York
consumers — who have already made reusable packaging platforms such as
a success in the area. And Algramo’s digitally operated, low-contact system
meets rigorous health and safety standards, minimizing the various touch points
between customers and their purchasing of a product and getting it home —
especially critical as COVID-19 continues to rage on.
Published Aug 25, 2020 8am EDT / 5am PDT / 1pm BST / 2pm CEST