Early September this year, I visited ReTuna Galleria with some fellow Medinge members. The mall is next door to the recycling centre of the town of Eskilstuna, two hours west from Stockholm, Sweden.
Normally, I would only go to a recycled goods shop to deliver clutter from either my own, or our parents’ homes. Why go there with my branding friends? But to my surprise we were in for a professional treat.
At Eskilstuna, like in many other municipalities the world over, people bring their clutter and waste that does go in the normal trash. Helped by big signs with attractive pictures, goods can be delivered at the specific containers. The crew provides help where necessary and splits the goods into further categories whilst deciding if something can be recycled or upcycled by the shop owners of the adjacent mall. This is where the creative skill and craftmanship of the shop owners comes in.
Anna Bergström, Mall Manager of ReTuna Galleria, has a strong vision for the mall that opened in August 2015. A successful vision, that generated SEK 11.7 million (1 million EURO) in total sales in 2018. She demands a good business plan from every shop owner before granting them a rental spot at the mall. But not only a plan; a strong purpose and a differentiating proposition is also required. No charity. This has resulted in an attractive and diverse combination of shops. ReBuyke sells repaired bikes in all sizes. Maria, the eccentric owner of Ecoflor, a florist shop, makes art works out of old garden pots, decorating them, for example, with shell patterns she crafts from old leather jackets.
BY ASTRID MANDEN-BENNEKER
Branding strategist with a conscience. Looking for the right balance between people, planet and profit. All round marketing experience in the arts, printing, fmcg and banking industry.