Priti visits company cutting waste and bringing IT to people who might not otherwise be able to afford it
The MP for Witham, Priti Patel, has re-visited ICEX Ltd in Europa Park, Witham for a full tour and discussion of the company’s work in securely processing and reconditioning unwanted PCs and laptops from large companies, for selling at significantly lower prices. Their aim is to bring information technology to a wider client base, so that many people who wouldn’t normally be able to afford such technology, can access it. Their work also means a lot less equipment is sent away to landfill.
Her visit on Friday 3rd March 2023, followed from a tour of Witham Industrial Watch members in January, when Priti had a brief meeting with Dr John Russell, CEO of ICEX, when they agreed to meet again for a more detailed discussion and tour. During her second visit, Priti was given a full tour of the premises and the chance to see re-conditioning of IT equipment in progress. In the calendar year 2022, ICEX repurposed some 45,651 IT assets. 57% of that figure consisted of equipment used by people again and 43% was recycled. 0% went to landfill.After the tour, Dr Russell gave Priti a full briefing on ICEX, its work and how it markets the reconditioned equipment. Up to 40 per cent of its output is sold through e-bay. They have a significant presence in the higher security sectors, including banking, the NHS and local government. It has recently acquired another company that specialises in doing the same sort of work in the education sector. Dr Russell also outlined the difficulties the company has with VAT being charged at the full rate of 20% on reconditioned products, which hampers its efforts to expand its markets and reduce waste. Priti is in touch with HM Treasury about this issue.
Speaking after her tour, Priti said: “It was very useful to find out more about ICEX, who are doing an excellent job in getting technology, which many of us take for granted, to a wider a range of people who may not normally be able to afford it. The company has been innovative and environmentally responsible in developing its own niche market. I will continue to put the case to the Treasury for a more flexible approach to VAT on reconditioned IT equipment sales.”
Dr John Russell, ICEX’s CEO said: “We very much appreciated Priti’s interest in our work and welcomed the opportunity to give her the full tour and a more detailed appreciation of what we do. She seemed genuinely interested in our business and how it operates, asking a lot of very good questions. She also clearly understood and sympathised with the issues we have with the current VAT regime.”