Refurbished.nl

"We’re happy to be able to help with our devices and get through this crisis together."

Interview with Joost Angelier — co-founder of Refurbished.nl.

Refurbished.nl

A refurbished iPhone, iPad or MacBook is extremely popular nowadays; you get a good-as-new Apple device without having to pay full price. That was different three and a half years ago, when Joost Angelier and his partner Omar Ouchene started the online shop Refurbished.nl. Joost: “It was an immature market and there was a lot of junk on offer. We want to offer quality to our customers so we do everything ourselves, from buying and refurbishing to managing stock and online sales.”

A quick start to working from home

After the government’s press conference on 15 March, Joost took immediate action to keep his business running from home. “Our system is easy to access externally. We arranged for laptops and telephones with headsets for the staff and within a morning everyone was working from home.” It was especially important to keep customer service open and to continue helping customers. “We take the coronavirus measures very seriously and my priority is protecting our employees. Luckily, our organisation is in tip-top shape on the technical side. By chance, we just got a new telephony partner which converts the main telephone line into an app and allows us to take phone calls at home.”

Business as usual

Joost counts himself lucky that he doesn’t have any physical shops. “It’s a blessing that we only trade online. We’re still running as usual and have even continued growing.” The iPads in particular have been going fast in recent weeks, he remarks. “We’re seeing a shift in customers’ needs. I suspect people want to stay in contact with each other – through FaceTime, for instance – and are therefore buying tablets for themselves or a family member.”

Yet there are also challenges now that daily life has largely come to a standstill. “Deliveries by PostNL and DHL can take a little longer. We note that on our website and again with each order confirmation.”

Aside from the fact that everyone is working from home, it’s business as usual for Refurbished.nl. Joost explains just how important it is now to work with well-protected technology and reliable partners. “We recently started offering customers the ability to pay later with Klarna via Mollie and that’s going great. Our online payment system is rock solid.” How has Joost especially noticed that? Because nothing has really changed. “We can always reach someone at Mollie but, for now, no news is good news!”

Helping with iPads

According to Joost, the most important thing now is that we can show our social side. When a healthcare institution approached Refurbished.nl, the webshop decided to donate iPads to their hospital and care home. “It’s great that with technology we can help to get through this difficult time together. Especially when you read about how lonely some older people are or that sick people no longer have contact with the outside world.” This was not a marketing stunt, Joost emphasises. “We did that anonymously.”

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“I didn’t dare to put any of this in a business plan.” — Anne, Vedder & Vedder