Single letter, numerous changes for a Janesville business

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Thursday, January 7, 2010
— A Janesville company has recycled one letter in its name.

But the significance of the change goes beyond logos and building awnings.

Waste recycler CRT Processing is now known as URT, which stands for Universal Recycling Technologies.

The name change better reflects an expanding company that has added services, product lines and locations since it was founded in Janesville in 2003, said Jim Cornwell, the company’s president.

Cornwell said the company has grown far beyond processing cathode ray tube computer monitors.

“Many of our clients thought all we did was CRTs,” Cornwell said.

URT still recycles CRTs, but as the industry has expanded and become more regulated, the company has moved into more sophisticated services and products.

URT now handles universal waste, electronic waste, asset management and pre-paid pack-and-ship recycling box programs. It also manufactures its own recycling equipment.

The company and its 75 or so employees moved from Barberry Drive to a 140,000-square-foot building on Beloit Avenue in 2006, a year before it was acquired by the Beloit-based Hendricks Holding Co.

URT now has 175 employees in Janesville and another 125 at seven other facilities in the United States. Materials are processed to a commodity level and shipped within those markets. Glass, for example, makes its way to large manufacturer in South Korea.

The company’s eight locations allow it to offer customers outstanding service, Cornwell said.

“We guarantee responsible and ethical cradle-to-grave recycling,” he said. “All end-of-life equipment is processed under our strict supervision—never exported offshore—providing our customers with absolute peace of mind and optimal service.”

Offshore dumping of toxic electronic waste has become a hot topic, particularly since the “60 Minutes” television show profiled the practice in a segment titled “Following the Trail of Toxic E-Waste.”

Before it was known as URT, CRT was asked to be part of the segment, but footage of the Janesville operation didn’t make the final cut.

The company, however, has not gone unrecognized for its commitment to sustainable recycling practices.

URT has been repeatedly honored for its commitment to exceeding compliance standards. It was named the first “eSteward” glass processor in the United States by the Basel Action Network, a non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating toxic global environmental practices.

“We are proud to be a part of such a widespread, global effort to responsibly dispose of and reuse our resources,” Cornwell said. “We feel fortunate to work with a forward-thinking group of customers with similar goals and look forward to continuing to grow to best serve them.”

Even more growth is likely in Janesville, he said, noting that when the economy rebounds it’s possible URT will need more processing space.

The company runs three shifts during the week and is likely to expand to weekend shifts, he said. Of the 700-plus recyclers in the country, URT is in the top five in processing volume.

It also has contracted with several manufacturers to recycle electronics.

Recent legislation requires manufacturers to be responsible for recycling their products. Because electronics manufacturers generally aren’t in the recycling business, they’re likely to turn to companies such as URT.

“That legislation is absolutely a good thing for us,” Cornwell said.

Last updated: 12:44 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012

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