How TOMbag helps BIC Services to eliminate one tonne of single-use plastic trash bags every year at one of Sydney’s CBD most iconic office towers.
Customer: BIC Services
Founded in 1989, BIC Services delivers personalised and integrated commercial cleaning services to Australia’s major property owners, tenants and investors. BIC delivers premium cleaning services including waste management, window cleaning, hygiene services and general cleaning. In 2022 BIC became a part of Bidvest, a leading South African services, trading and distribution group.
Interviewee: Mark Gerdovic, GM - Commercial Excellence at BIC Services
BIC Services is a national cleaning services provider. We have over 3,200 sites nationally and we have an employee base of over 2,500. And sustainability is one of our pillars and it’s such an important aspect of our business and what we offer to our clients.
Global waste is increasing. In Australia, we recycle 60% of our waste. We have a long way to go to reach a resource recovery rate of 80%. Our scope 3 emissions include 38% of garbage bags, so we are incentivized to make change. We purchase too many plastic bags each year - it would be in the millions. Single-use plastic bags contribute 38% to our scope 3 emissions, so, it’s very important for us to have a sustainable solution moving forward.
After a lengthy research project, we were introduced to the TOMbag. Upon meeting with TOMbag, we were very impressed with the durability of the product. It is circular and at the end of life it will not be sent to landfill, so that was another aspect of the product. We’ve looked at other alternatives - compostable bags and plastic bags that have recycled content but they don’t achieve the outcome that we are looking for as what TOMbag can do for us.
BIC worked with Dexus to select a building, Australia Square. Australia Square is a premium asset in the Sydney CBD. The TOMbag was used for the mixed recycling stream, and we used it for all tenancies, on all floors. The trial itself lasted six weeks. We were quite impressed with the durability of the bag during that process. We ended up washing the bags on a fortnightly basis, in between we were wiping down the product with a cloth to maintain hygiene and it worked well.
And we had some great feedback from the team on the ground. They’ve commented on the durability of the TOMbag, the time they are actually saving in the operation, but also the added benefit, they understand that there is a sustainable outcome.
With the implementation of the TOMbag, we will save over 33,000 single-use plastic bin liners each year and that will also prevent a thousand kilograms from landfill per year. Quite impressive numbers.
For BIC, the TOMbag makes sense. We expect that the TOMbag will last up to four years but our payback period is less than two. So from a financial viewpoint it makes perfect economic sense to go down the path of the TOMbag. So we’ll be looking to include TOMbag as a service offering to our new and existing clients.