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Circular Initiative – 2019 

The first, annual, Circular Initiative took place on June 27, 2019, at Eric Ericsonhallen, Skeppsholmen in Stockholm. The event was an exclusive opportunity to listen to top management from Stena Recycling, Stora Enso, Electrolux, ABB and Combitech, explaining the need for transformation the industry is facing. Adding expertise from academia gave an overall perspective and a glimpse of future possibilities. A concrete action plan was discussed in a panel session with input from the audience.

The agenda entailed a range of business leaders and other interesting stakeholders sharing insights and motivating collaboration.

The event 2019 was an exclusive opportunity to listen to top management from Stena Recycling, Electrolux, Stora Enso, ABB and Combitech explaining the need for transformation the industry is facing. Adding expertise from academia gave an overall perspective and a glimpse of future possibilities. The agenda 2019 also included a panel session where a concrete action plan was discussed, offering an opportunity to add the audience input.

The agenda 2019 entailed a range of business leaders to share insights and motivate collaboration: Kristofer Sundsgård (CEO Stena Recycling), Susanne Timsjö (Manager Robotics and Applications ABB), Johan Gunnarsson (CTO Combitech), Karl-Henrik Sundström (CEO Stora Enso) and Jan Brockmann (COO Electrolux), Malin Baltzar (Head of Sustainable Business Stena Recycling), Mats Torring (Head of New Ventures Stena Metall).

Including guest speakers:
Märtha Rehnberg (Co-founder & partner Dare Disrupt), Dee Caffari (Skipper Volvo Ocean Race) and Patrik Salén (Commodore of the Royal Swedish Yacht Club).

Adding to panel discussion:
Jacob Wallenberg (Chairman of Investor AB), Sarah McPhee (Chairman if Houdini Sportswear), Lena Westerholm (Head of Sustainable affairs, ABB AB) and Hans Torin (CEO Combitech), together with some of the voices from earlier business agenda.


Sarah McPhee

“Well, I was actually really impressed to see the initiative. It really helps to have a person like Jacob Wallenberg and some of our bigger industries to take part of something called the Circular Initiative, because we want to move away from an idea that this is about lefty, greeny, inspirational individuals. We are talking about really putting this into the basic industries of the world to change, to prevent any destruction of the planet and also to create a better planet to live on.”

Märtha Rehnberg

“My main message was to not turn circular economy into circular thinking in terms of we producing our previous system, our previous ways of connecting with products but also engage and embrace with this agenda as a way to fundamentally change how people relate to our economy but also the products that matter round them. I talked even about what if we need to live with killer whales in the future in these sea scrapers to radically think different.”

Susanne Timsjö

“I think it’s important because we gather around the circularity, I mean, often when you talk about sustainability, it’s still linear, but now it’s really focused on the circularity and for us the aim is zero waste. And from an ABB perspective we’re really happy to be part of this initiative, and what I think also is good with this event is that it’s, I mean, it’s getting concrete in a way, I mean sustainability is such a broad topic but here we talk about concrete collaboration, but also concrete actions that takes us one step further to the vision of zero waste.”

Hans Torin

“I think it has been a fantastic day, it has been fantastic speakers. I think that’s one of the key things to get inspiration from others, because then you can jump even further in your own business and work with different clients and so on, so it’s been a very inspiring day.

Jan Brockmann

“This event is on such a high level that it creates hopefully a lot of attention and awareness for all stakeholders – the companies that works together, investors, politicians, the media. Because at the end we will take a leading position also in Sweden if we invest in this, and we have to invest in this together, because there’s a lot of new learnings in this partnership that will lead to optimization, and eventually as I said, exporting of the learning, taking a leadership role in business therefore also. And I think it requires kick-offs of this level to really get the energy going from all stakeholders in society, not only in business. “


Dee Caffari, Skipper Volvo Ocean Race

Hans Torin, CEO Combitech

Jacob Wallenberg, Chairman of Investor

Jan Brockmann, COO Electrolux

Johan Gunnarsson, CTO Combitech

Karl-Henrik Sundström, CEO Stora Enso

Kristofer Sundsgård, CEO Stena Recycling Group


Lena Westerholm, Head of Sustainable affairs ABB

Malin Baltzar, Sustainable Manager Stena Recycling

Mats Torring, Head of New Ventures Stena Metall

Märtha Rehnberg, Co-founder & Partner Dare Disrupt

Patrik Salén, Commodore of the Royal Swedish Yacht Club

Susanne Timsjö, Manager Robotics and Applications ABB

Sarah McPhee, Chairman of Houdini Sportswear