Hello. I'm Keith, and I am starting a unique company, with your help.
My company is Warlord Enterprises (WE) and it will accomplish 2 main goals.
1) Showing people the value in their discarded items, and providing them with a way to turn that small value into powerful positive action.
2) Using the first goal as a metaphor for life, that being that what we have discarded has real value, and that value is important, no matter what format it may be.
The "discarded" that WE will focus on is Veterans from two very different segments of society that share many common threads. Incarceration Veterans (IVs) are simply people with experience being locked up is jail or prison. Military Veterans (MVs) are people who have previously served in out nations various military services. They both need help to find their way in a civilian society that doesn't quite know how to respond to them, work with them, or help them. They are from two very different sectors but both have very similar stories, needs, and struggles. These similarities will be the glue that will hold WE together, and hold the Veterans together as well. My YouTube channel has a video called Institutionalized that explains that foundation in more detail.
The 4 cornerstones of WE's mission are common and ancient wisdom.
One, a quote from Albert Einstein, " "Try not to become a [person] of success but rather to become a [person] of value."
Two, from Proverbs 27:17, "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another."
Third, from Ecclesiastes 4:12, "Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken."
Fourth, from Henry David Thoreau," What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals."
There will be videos to detail these 4 items and shed more light in why WE chose them.
The business that We will engage in is to collect automotive, industrial, commercial, and household waste, and properly dispose of it, for a profit. Not all waste, but primarily metal, electronics and appliances.
I know, I know, every guy with a pickup truck is doing that today! I also know that because there are so many people "scrapping", it's extremely competitive. But they are all in it for the money and that's it.
Here is where Warlord Enterprises is different, and why it will succeed, even thrive, where so many fail.
WE isn't in it for just the money. In fact, profit isn't even the goal, but will certainly be a result.
WE has 3 driving goals.
First, to illustrate for the Veterans how just because someone had discarded something doesn't reflect it's value. It only reflects that persons perception of the value. The value and the perception are not linked together. The same applies when people discard people.
Second, to provide an environment where Veterans from both sides can learn from and mentor each other, to encourage each other, and to help them hold themselves accountable for the life they lead.
WE call them all Veterans. There will be Military Veterans, Incarceration Veterans, and Dual Veterans.
There will be 3 person teams with a truck and trailer working together. They will work together as a team, accomplishing the tasks assigned to them as a team, as well as tasks assigned to each individual in the team. They may be collecting material, sorting it, separating it, or whatever else might be needed. It will usually be simple work, but not always easy. There will be plenty of opportunities for Veterans with disabilities to work for WE as well.
At the end of the day they will know they have done a good days work, and that the days work was good.
The material that WE will handle will come from several "unconventional" sources, and a few more typical ones. Much of what WE will collect would otherwise end up in a landfill, producing no value for anyone, and instead being an ecological burden for years to come.
In the past, WEs major source of material has been buying it from automotive repair shops, because they are the most common collection point for such waste. Cast iron, aluminum, brass, platinum, steel, copper, and various other metals all can be found in a modern vehicle. They all have value if sold to the right buyer, and in a large enough volume to make the effort worthwhile to the seller.
As in most things, there is profit in volume. The more you can sell, the more you can profit. It isn't worth anyone's time to take the old brake rotors from their last brake job into a metal recycling center. On average, in today's market, they are worth around $2. By the time you figure in your time, fuel cost, and maintenance costs, you would actually lose money by taking them in. As a result, almost everyone just let's the shop dispose of the old parts.
And that's where things go south fast. You think the shop has just done you a favor, when in fact, you have just handed them money. The short if it is that shops are making money from what you think is trash. Then they are turning around and selling it. The trouble is that they demand such high prices for the trash you gave them for free, it's nearly impossible for someone to make a successful business out of buying from them. The worst part is that in general, when the shop owner is told that their asking price is simply too high, that to pay it would mean losing money for the scrap buyer, their response is "So, that's not my problem" Lets remember here, this is ALL material that they got for free, by misleading you, the customer/consumer, into believing it would just end up in their dumpster. They even charged you a "shop supplies" fee to help cover the cost of emptying the dumpster that they will NOT be putting your trash into if they can screw over the right scrap buyer for it! Nice guys, these shop owners and managers huh?,
For a more detailed explanation of what I am talking about, there is a video on my YouTube channel called "Your Trash is their Treasure" The short of it is this. Almost all the waste generated from maintaining and repairing your cars, trucks, motorcycles, ATVs, lawn equipment, appliances, and consumer electronics has value. Recycling and repurposing is a HUGE business. When it comes to automotive waste, the problem is greed. The shop owners know what the waste is worth, and they are happy to sell it to the highest bidder. Even if the highest bidder would actually LOSE money paying the price asked.
I have been a mechanic for a lot of years, and frankly I am tired of fighting with shops, both as a mechanic employee and as a consumer, to get them to do the right thing. It's just exhausting.
So, if they won't be reasonable with selling the scrap that they ALWAYS get for free by lying to the customer, well, maybe it's time the customer gets to decide what to do with the value of the discarded parts from their own equipment. Maybe you will still decide to let them handle it, but finally you will have the informed option.
Warlord Enterprises will partner with local churches and other non-profit organizations, as well as the rare repair shops that want to be ethical with their scrap.
WE will provide lockable storage bins to any business or organization who wants to participate in our buy-back system
The organization receives a bin from WE. They simply ask their members to bring the waste from their vehicles, their dead electronics, their broken appliances you normally would leave for your repair shop to dispose of, or throw away yourself, and drop them in the WE bins.
Once the bin is near full, the organization calls WE for pickup.
WE comes out, evaluates what materials are in the bin, and pays the organization. The amount paid will depend on what's in the bin, but our goal is to pay the organization 50% of what WE expects to collect for the bin. The bin will then be sorted into the various grades that our buyers set, and then deliver it to them, where they purchase it from us.
Yeah, the members will have to get a little dirty, and they may need to call WE and arrange pickups at their shop for the heavy items. I don't expect someone to throw an engine block into their trunk and drag it to church on Sunday! I am betting that for many people, of they can turn trash into help for their own organization, and for veterans, and all it costs is a little dirt on their hands, they will do it.
WE will also pick up appliances from the organization or from members home or work.
Basically, WE will do all it can to collect material and help as many people as possible in the process.
Most of the profit will go into running the business, growing the business, and helping the veterans employed by WE, including educating them in life skills they may need but not have.
And some of that profit will go into a fund to help children of fallen veterans in the same ways as we would liked to have helped their parent.
As for equipment and vehicles, WE will never buy brand new when used or refurbished is just as good. I personally believe that the "consumer" mentality in this country is killing us, and as much as my company can, I want to disconnect from being a typical consumer.
Some of what WE collect will be repurposed. A mobile home can be turned into a trailer that can then be used to hook to a truck to collect material, providing a work opportunity for 3 more veterans.
Oh the things WE will do, and the impact it will have on so many people!
So let's build a business driven by the desire to do good, not the desire to dress good!
Let's build a business where people can learn to look at something or someone who's worn out, damaged, faded, and dirty, and see potential, see value, and see usefulness again!
What will the money be used for.
$3000 15 Collection Bins at a cost of $200 per.
These bins will be build by WE, and will include a hand wash station for people to clean up after they drop their donation.
$1000 for flatbed trailer. I can haul 2 bins in the bed of a pickup, but beyond that I run the risk of overloading it. A flatbed will allow me to haul at least 5, plus room for empty bins, which allows me to both collect material and arrange new clients on the same trip out, saving driving time.
$1000 for operating expenses such as fuel and business lunches (at places like Sub#ay) and licensing fees for the various communities as needed.
This money will propel WE into action and enable us to establish that WE is the company to deal with if you want to see your waste do the highest good for the most people, doing it ethiclly and honorably.