Inside PCs for People facility.

PCs for People handles about 3,500 computers a month. | Courtesy of PCs for People

PCs for People, a nonprofit group that performs ITAD services for businesses and provides refurbished computers to low-income people, is growing its processing footprint in three cities.

The St. Paul, Minn.-based organization provides ITAD services for about 1,000 businesses, processing the used electronics in R2- and NAID-certified facilities in Denver and St. Paul. With an eye toward bridging the digital divide, the group provides used computers, low-cost internet access, computer training, tech support and repair services to low-income residents.

Casey Sorensen, CEO of PCs for People, spoke with E-Scrap News about the group’s completed, planned and potential processing growth in the following cities:

St. Paul: In April 2019, PCs for People purchased a new 31,000-square-foot space, which recently began operating. The facility, which replaced a 7,000-square-foot processing space, will refurbish an average of about 100 computers a day. Up to 1 million pounds a year of end-of-life electronics will be recycled there, according to the group.

Denver: PCs for People is in the process of leasing a 21,000-square-foot space to replace the existing 7,500-square-foot one, Sorensen said. The new Denver processing facility should be up and running in March or April 2020.

Cleveland: The group plans to launch a 17,000-square-foot processing facility in the next couple of months, he said. The space is located next to PCs for People’s retail store, which opened a year ago. Like its St. Paul and Denver facilities, PCs for People will pursue R2 and NAID certifications for the Cleveland site, Sorensen said.

In addition, Sorensen said PCs for People is exploring opening a location in Baltimore. A partner there has offered to fund part of the expansion, and PCs for People is looking for money to cover the rest of the cost. While that facility is still only a possibility, if all goes well, PCs for People could have a facility up and running in Baltimore by June 2020, Sorensen said.

Across its two existing processing facilities, PCs for People currently handles over 2 million pounds a year (1.5 million pounds in St. Paul and 540,000 pounds in Denver), Sorensen said.

In terms of number of units, the organization now handles about 3,500 computers a month, most of which go into the refurbishment pipeline. Since its founding in 1998, the organization has distributed nearly 100,000 computers to people in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

More stories about processors


Van Dyk