Meet the member: Mark Collier, re-Mark-it

Local News 9 Nov 2021

We talk to FSB member Mark Collier about his business, his FSB membership and how his business is working to promote sustainability

Mark Collier is the owner of re-Mark-it, a scrap metal recycling company based in Bedfordshire. Mark has been an FSB member since he started his own business over 17 years ago. We caught up with Mark to learn more about how he’s promoting sustainable practices in his business and why he’s thankful for the protection of FSB membership.  

Tell us about yourself and your business.  

After a varied career, I started working in the waste industry before setting up my own business as a scrap metal merchant over 17 years ago. Since then, re-Mark-it has grown to a team of five and become a limited company.  

Why did you join FSB? 

When I was starting my business, I spoke to another local business owner about joining FSB and they said it was the best thing they had done for their business. As a start up, it meant that I knew I had somewhere I could turn to for advice and services to help me run my business.  

It’s an investment in your business and you get access to a range of information and services, as well as opportunities to connect with other members. 

As a long-time member, what do you find most beneficial about your membership? 

I look at my membership as an insurance policy, just like my car insurance. You may not need it all the time, but the protection is invaluable, especially as a small business owner. When you’re working for yourself, it’s reassuring to have a sense of belonging in an organisation that helps to fight for small businesses. Even through we’re in different industries, we all have the same goal in common. 

Tell us about your recent experience with the legal advice line. 

The legal advice line was brilliant. HR can be a headache and time-consuming when you’re running a small business, so it was great to have my problem solved within a day. I had a call back within 15 minutes, along with a clear explanation of what I could do. I was then sent a template letter and given instructions of what to do so that I was covering myself. The process would have taken much longer without advice and guidance from FSB.  

How are you promoting sustainability within your business? 

re-Mark-it are recyclers of all forms of ferrous, non-ferrous and precious metals, and the work we do helps to reduce carbon and save energy. Our metal is recycled responsibly all over the world, through various foundries, smelters and exporters, with as little wastage as possible. We’re reducing the use of natural resources which would otherwise be needed to make new metals. 

As a sustainable business, I feel we have a responsibility to make sure we’re as environmentally friendly as possible. We try to keep waste to a minimum which not only keeps our costs down but is also better for the planet. Aside from essential paperwork, many of our business procedures are now done electronically to save paper. 

We encourage customers not to use plastic bags when they bring in their materials as this creates extra waste that we want to avoid. Currently, we’re looking to source our own branded bags that are strong enough to hold scrap metals so we can give them out to customers, as they will last longer and reduce waste.