Austrian startup bgood is making bag reuse the smart and rewarding choice for consumers. The company’s goodbag product allows passengers at Heathrow airport and shoppers at an ever increasing number of outlets across Europe, including 800 stores of the Swiss Retailer Denner, to track their own environmental impact and remove plastic bags from the sea.
A near-field communication (NFC) chip stitched into the bag communicates with the goodbag app to reveal usage and rack up loyalty points with various partner brands. Every purchase made at Denner with the bag results in the retailer making a contribution to NGO One Earth – One Ocean: the collection of one plastic bag from the sea.
The innovation originated during a Facebook chat between then university students Christoph Hantschk and Todor Lazov.
“Christoph had this idea about motivating people to reuse their bags through making the created impact visible in real-time and rewarding them for their eco-friendly behavior. The solution was standing right in front of me on my desk – put NFC chips in the bags.” said co-founder Todor Lazov.
The pair went on to develop the solution during a three-month spell at an IKEA Startup Bootcamp Accelerator in Sweden. Here they built a product around the nudging principle pioneered by Nobel Prize winner, Richard Thaler. Basically, that people respond better when an incentive is put in front of them.
“With the goodbag we created a unique shopping experience for customers that enables them to do good in their everyday life and at the same time see that every little action counts towards a more sustainable future,” added Christoph.
Stores across five countries are now signed up to the scheme and the startup says a host of the best known international retailers are lining up to follow suit from this summer.
You can buy a goodbag online here.