From Plastic Waste to Footwear: LDE SARL’s Green Entrepreneurship

As part of our entrepreneurship support program, the Virunga Alliance supports LDE SARL, a company that recycles plastic waste collected throughout the city of Goma, situated close to the Park. 

The enterprise is located within the dedicated Economic Development Park in Nyiragongo, created by the Virunga Alliance to aid the growth of businesses with a green-economy philosophy. Here the company processes plastic waste, before recycling it into inexpensive footwear, from slippers to sneakers, all made to the highest quality standards. 

The par excellence activities and products of LDE SARL represent a truly circular-economy, embodying the economic model advocated by the Virunga Alliance. Not only does their work protect the local environment from plastic pollution, but it also provides training, skills, and sustainable jobs in plastic manufacturing to local young people.

And the benefits don’t stop there – by collecting plastic waste, the shoe manufacturer can be a source of pride for local communities, making Goma a cleaner and happier place to live, all while providing locally manufactured and affordable footwear options, which historically had to be imported at a much higher cost. 

LDE SARL’s products are able to be produced efficiently in terms of cost and power consumption thanks to green energy supplied by the Virunga Alliance – another benefit of our entrepreneurship support program. Virunga Energies (a branch of the alliance) first harnesses the power of the Park’s extensive river networks through its hydroelectric plants, before delivering green, fairly priced, and reliable electricity to local businesses.

By avoiding fossil fuels and the related power outages that were once commonplace in and around Goma, the factory is able to run a 24-hour shift schedule, providing even more employment opportunities to local people and satisfying the growing demand for locally made footwear. 

Step by step, LDE SARL and other local green enterprises in the Economic Development Park are leading the way towards more equitable communities around the Park.

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