Functional economy: you don't need to own a Fairphone to enjoy its durability
Commown is a French cooperative that offers Fairphones and personal computers to private users on a monthly subscription, thus implementing the 'Product as as Service (PaaS)' business model designed by Circle Economy and Fairphone in the Circular Phone Report. The start-up was launched in December 2017 with private capital, and support from Alsace Active and La Nef to tackle the sustainability gap in the development and production of contemporary electronical equipment. Commown's economic model offers leases on the most sustainable hardware available to market (Fairphones are ethically sourced and designed for repairability, while personal computers are from repairable brand only).
The leasing system, where subscribers pay a set monthly fee to use the phone, but not own it, provides users with mobile phones without having to worry about repairability, durability or end-of-life. When hardware issues arise, Commown provides its subscribers with a fast replacement and repairs the individual modules itself, or disposes of broken parts using Fairphone's take back system.
Upgrades and continuous support are added benefits for the consumer.
Following an official partnership with Fairphone in February 2018, one hundred Fairphones were already made available to crowdfunders in March. The subscription service is now available to any French consumer, and has since been extended to include personal computers.
As of late 2018, Commown is developing business models targeted at other businesses and local communities.