On Bauer Business Focus — A conversation on being a CEO in the renewable energy sector with Houston Public Media News 88.7 Business Reporter Andrew Schneider.
Casey McNeil is a CEO of REECycle, which focuses on recycling rare earth elements that many common technologies like cell phones and laptops are dependent on for energy. The company is able to use recycled hard drives to create a sustainable domestic supply of precious elements in the United States.
“What we produce is a mixture of rare earths, so they will still need to be separated and purified. The cost of doing that is very capital intensive, so we are working with pre-existing companies to facilitate that separation and purification of these elements,” McNeil said.
McNeil first started the company in 2013 along with three classmates from the Wolff Center of Entrepreneurship at Bauer College. They were approached with technology patented by Allan Jacobson, the Robert A. Welch Chair of Science and Director of the Texas Center for Superconductivity at UH. REECycle obtained their initial funding through their three wins at national business plan competitions against graduate and Ph.D. programs from top schools like MIT, Stanford and Harvard.
“After we realized how critical these elements were and how impactful this company could be, we really started to figure out ways to tackle it. Now we couldn’t see ourselves doing anything else,” McNeil said.
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