Ecopreneur Roetz Amsterdam
Amsterdam: the city reigned by cyclists. This city so well equipped for riding, you'll find bike paths and lanes line almost every street and canal allowing cyclists safely drive through the city. Cyclists heading to and from work, laden with groceries heading home from the supermarket, parents with kids piled in the cart in the front, elderly with electric bikes… You will even find people who look like they are moving houses on a bike!
Since I'm from Holland it's no surprise that I love riding bikes rather than using taxis when I’m traveling. Besides the fact that it's a faster means of transport in super touristic cities, the wind in my hair always makes me feel free. I get my bearings so much quicker when I have my own wheels and there’s no barriers that stop me from connecting with the city and the country.
Did you know that the Netherlands have more bike per capita than any other European country?
There are many many bike rentals and sellers throughout the city, but I want to highlight one in particular: Roetz-Bikes.
Roetz believes in responsible and eco friendly entrepreneurship. They make eye-catching design bikes from discarded steel frames. With this Roetz seizes as little as possible on new raw materials. Every bike is provided with great care for details: piece by piece by people with a 'distance' to the labor market, who have been trained to become experienced bicycle repairers.
Roetz-Bikes are made in the Roetz Fair Factory, by hand and with pride. The team of makers are man and women with a distance to the labor market, for whatever reason. The background of the team members varies, but the technical insight is their common ground. At Roetz they are trained to be experienced bicycle repairers with a thorough understanding of all bike-related things.
They all have useful talents. They are extremely strong, quiet (or busy ...), stubborn, honest, or have an exceptional eye for detail. Characteristics that come in handy when creating a stylish bicycle from something that was labeled as scrap-iron. In short, just like the bikes, the Roetz bicycle makers are one of a kind.
Each Roetz-Bike has a frame that is suitable for a second life. Every year, 1 million bicycles are thrown away in the Netherlands. 1 MILLION!! Roetz selects the best steel frames of Dutch A-brands from this huge pile of bicycles. Brands that have proven to be masters in making robust frames that last longer than the rest of the bike. They are convinced that these used steel frames even survive the new frames that get on the market today.
Careful handling of raw materials is the starting point for more and more products and processes at Roetz-Bikes. For example, the dress protectors are made from depreciated industrial conveyor belts and the wooden crates of Amsterdam trees saved from the shredder. At Roetz-Bikes around 40% of the raw materials are reused!
Since 5 years, Roetz-Bikes ensures that people with a distance from the labor market have a job, reduces the pile of waste in Amsterdam and give a little push to the circular economy. Where one sees waste and drop-outs, Roetz sees raw materials and talents. The Roetz way of working shows that sustainable work yields profit for people, the environment and organizations.
So I'm a big fan of Roetz-Bikes, and so should you!