Millennium Recycling Inc. is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, having become a local leader in an industry filled with fluctuation and uncertainty, the Sioux Falls Argus Leader reported. As recycling processors across the United States face ongoing problems in the global market, Millennium has built a solid foundation thanks to Anderson’s prudence, the company’s willingness to embrace new technology and lessons learned during the lean years.
The Sioux Falls-based recycler — known as a materials recovery facility in the industry — is still pulled by market forces. The 20-year mark represents what Jake Anderson called a “down time” in a business that ebbs and flows with market demands for papers, plastics and metals. But he and other company leaders have weathered worse storms and have built a business model designed for long-term success.
Millennium is using 2019 to instead celebrate its success and growth over the years, including being an innovator in South Dakota’s recycling industry, being the first in the state to recycle consumer electronics, going on a trade mission to China with former Gov. Dennis Daugaard and launching the nonprofit Ecomaniacs, which provides recycling services to summer events.
The company’s northern Sioux Falls facility handles 3,500 to 4,000 tons per month compared to 150 to 300 tons per month it handled when Anderson bought the company. It employs about 30 people, not including the dozen staff members at Secure Enterprise Asset Management, a spin-off company that specializes in electronics recycling.
Relationships with the people and companies in the Sioux Falls area remain a strong focus for Millennium, which doesn’t do residential hauling but still actively tries to educate the community about up-to-date best practices in recycling, Millennium President Shannon Dwire said.
Dwire worked for Python before Anderson bought the company and has been with Millennium ever since. Connection to the community has been a common thread since Anderson bought the company she said.