An Indonesian entrepreneur who repurposes plastic waste into fashionable products is the global winner in the Social Enterprises category of the 2018 Shell LiveWIRE Top Ten Innovators Awards. 

Nina Nuraniyah’s company, Greenna, provides integrated waste management solutions and education services that empower the local community to reduce, reuse and recycle waste.

Nina received her US $20k prize following an intense business pitch competition in Kuching, Malaysia, during Global Entrepreneurship Week, in which she beat off stiff competition from two other start-ups in the Social Enterprises category from Brazil and Malaysia.

The Shell LiveWIRE Top Ten Innovators Awards also presented top prizes to entrepreneurs who have developed outstanding innovations in Energy Solutions and Retail Supply Chain categories, with the winner in each category collecting US $20k and two Runners-Up receiving funding of US $10k. All nine winners also receive an awards package including: mentoring support by a Shell expert; the opportunity to benefit from market linkages; and, the possibility to be considered as a vendor to Shell’s Retail business.

Greenna is helping to tackle the acute waste disposal problem facing many communities in Indonesia that do not have access to public waste collection services. This has led to residents burying their waste or burning it, which leads to contaminated waterways and air pollution.

The solution devised by Greenna, is multifaceted, with community involvement and empowerment at the heart of its approach. Awareness of the importance of responsible waste management is essential in changing behaviour, and Greenna delivers education programmes within schools, businesses and community groups. Greenna also provides a ‘waste bank’ where people can deposit their garbage, and the company sorts the waste into organic and non-organic sections. Some of the waste is transformed into seed plastic for plastic recycling, and the company works with local housewives to produce a wide range of recycled products including wallets, bags and pencil cases. Organic waste is composted to produce fertile soils for urban farming of medicinal plants and vegetables.

Greenna has grown to employ 23 staff, and has processed over 130 tons of plastic waste. It has also increased the monthly income of female workers from US $4 to US $154, which has enabled around 30 children to continue their secondary education. 

Commenting on what the award means for her company, Nina said “It was such an unexpected moment when my name was called out by the judge. Greenna became a global winner and that makes me feel so proud.

“I feel very blessed to have been able to be here and to take away such a special prize, on behalf of the team, which will enable Greenna to grow, achieve more and ultimately to have a bigger social impact!”

The two Runners-Up in the Social Enterprises category, each receiving US $10k, are Ai Brique from Malaysia, a green technology solutions consultancy for the improvement of business operations and efficiency, and Mulheres Do Sul Global from Brazil, which economically empowers women refugees by supporting their meaningful employment as seamstresses.

Shell Indonesia has commissioned Greenna to provide waste management solutions centred on two villages in Bekasi, near to the company’s Marunda Lubricants Oil Blending Plant, as part of its fenceline community development programme.

Acknowledging the impact of becoming a registered Shell vendor on her business, Nina said, “Being appointed as a Shell Indonesia registered vendor is a great boost for my business. It’s enabled us to scale up our operations, and this has led to the creation of several new jobs to facilitate the business’ development.

“Greenna is now a well-respected social enterprise, and its status as a Shell registered vendor has contributed significantly to this.”

Runner-up award winner Haaziq Ibrahim of green technology solutions company Ai Brique, from Malaysia, didn’t just leave Kuching with his US $10k prize. Through networking at the Top Ten Innovators event, Haaziq and Shell LiveWIRE Brunei alumnus Johari bin Brahim of Teamone Environmental Technologies, which has a US $24m contract with Shell Brunei to supply them with tanker, forklift and manpower services, are collaborating on potential business opportunities with Shell Brunei, including asset rejuvenation and waste management services, and creating sustainable artisanal fishing practices for Borneo.

Commenting on the business opportunities resulting from the Top Ten Innovators event, Haaziq Ibrahim said, “Meetings with Shell stakeholders at the event provided us with potential opportunities to collaborate and to develop our business further.”