Going Green with RayCycle
Penny Brand meets the local plasterer-turned-inventor who will revolutionise construction waste to save the environment as well as return money to savvy businesses.
It’s like an episode of Shark Tank, where aspiring entrepreneurs from around the world pitch their ideas to a panel of investors, only for Cooloola Cove inventor Ray Kearney it seems he will have absolutely no trouble when it comes to opportunity knocking at his door.
In fact, Ray is on the brink of turning his ground-breaking green waste innovation, which has been 15 years in the making, into a billion-dollar industry.
Ray has designed and developed an eco-friendly portable machine that can break down construction waste enabling it to be recycled and sold.
“Not only will this initiative give companies the chance to embrace a greener philosophy, but also make money from the recycled materials they collect,” Ray says. “It’s a win-win situation all round.”
In 2019 it was estimated that Australia produced over 76 million tonnes of waste for the year, that equates to 1.4 kilograms per person per day.
And the manufacturing and construction sectors account for more than a quarter of that waste.
“Almost 100 per cent of construction site waste is dumped into valuable landfill,” Ray said. “I’ve had five manufacturing companies and in each one I have always recycled part of it because I’ve always been so passionate about recycling.”
Now Ray wants the entire construction industry to embrace his passion for being kinder to our planet.
The unique portable and mobile recycling machines give builders the ability to recycle 90 per cent of construction waste, and Ray believes
the machines have unlimited opportunities globally.
“It will hold immense appeal to many organisations such as national environmental groups, city councils and government departments; plasterboard manufactures, timber and furniture workshops, cabinet makers; and waste transfer stations, just to name a few.”
Ray’s concept is simple.
He has designed three waste machines: The Mini, Standard and Mega.
He says the portable Mini is the perfect application for high-rise construction and shopping centres as it can fit through a normal sized doorway.
“The mobile Standard machines will work for most construction sites and the Mega unit is perfect for manufacturers and rural councils,” he says.
The mobile RayCycle machines can granulate and repurpose bricks, blocks, pavers, ceramic tiles, timber studs, cement sheets and plasterboard.
“The list is endless,” Ray says.
Once granulated the materials are bagged and sealed on the machine, and contained and packed on site.
The recycled materials can be sold at a retail level or transported to a bulk storage area to become certified road base, organic garden mulch, garden aggregate or, in the case of plasterboard, recycled into gypsum for bulk agricultural use.
“The enormity of this market is mind boggling,” Ray says.
“The simplicity of the concept is second to none, and it is an incredible way of saving valuable land space while saving our planet, and not to mention,
“There’s just nothing in the market like it. Most recycling machines can only recycle one product. This machine recycles everything, with the small exception of general waste. It can do all construction materials with one machine.”
At this stage, Ray is looking for investors to get the first machines to factory floors, and he has already secured a manufacturer in Gympie who is ready to start building the first of what promises to be an expected 72,000 machines sold in Australia and the US alone – and thousands more worldwide.
Ray will display his mobile recycling machine at the New Orleans Waste Expo in May 2024, and already has interest from US buyers. He believes this global expo is his gateway to the worldwide success of RayCycle.
Ray, who is 75-years-old, began his career as a Gyprock plasterer straight out of school, and has since gained a wealth of knowledge from building sites. But Ray always knew there was more for him in this world.
“I’ve had five manufacturing companies and four of them have been my designs,” he said. “I was 37 before I realised I had a brain. I got sick of what I was doing, and quickly realised I could fix just about everything.”
While he continued working as a plasterer by day to support his wife and two daughters, Ray also studied at night to build the skills required
to turn his dreams into a reality.
“I went to TAFE at night and studied small business, accountancy, computer skills, and communication,” he says. “I was always earning three times more than other plasterers because I was so good at it.”
Ray built three prototypes for his latest invention and has had the prototype tested and proven.
He is now finally ready to share it with the world.
The RayCycle machines will retail from around $180,000-$340,000, with a healthy turnaround for buyers.
“To put that into perspective, a smaller machine costs $180,000, which can be turned into $100,000 a year,” he said.
“A high-rise contractor currently has to get rid of their rubbish which comes as a cost. Exchanging that cost from one thing to another means you’re saving money and saving the environment.”
And better still, turning waste into wealth.
If you are interested in learning more or would like to invest in a better world contact RayCycle’s business broker and business partner Ken Dyce on 0439 106 741 or email [email protected]