An aerial shot of Gothenburg, Sweden – home of Stena Recycling
About us

Our history

Dan Stena Olsson – CEO Stena AB and Executive Chairman, Stena Metall Group and son of Stena Recycling founder Sten A Olsson.

“Caring for each other and the environment means working in harmony. You solve problems together, and that’s what sparks development.“

Dan Stena Olsson, CEO Stena AB and Executive Chairman, Stena Metall Group.

An archive image showing Sten A Olsson’s office and scrap yard in Gothenburg – the beginnings of Stena Recycling
An archive image showing Sten A Olsson’s scrap yard in Gothenburg – the beginnings of Stena Recycling

A history of true entrepreneurial spirit

1939 - 1983

1939 – The foundations of the Stena Metall Group, and indeed the Stena Sphere, were laid when 23-year-old Sten A. Olsson began trading metals, other scrap and raw rubber from a little office in Gothenburg.
1950s – An expansive era where the number of employees grew rapidly.
1952 – After working mostly with trading and storage, the company opened its first branch office and scrap collection and processing took off.
1952 – Land purchased in Tingstad becomes the company’s first scrap yard.
1970 – Strategic decision taken that Stena Metall is “not just a scrap wholesaler”.
1972 – Over the years, freight became increasingly important but it wasn’t until 1972 that the business was divided into Stena Metall and Stena Line.
1977 – Steel wholesaler purchased.
1980 – Stena Metall acquires PLM Återvinning – Sweden’s second largest recycling company at that time. Stena Metall’s operations more than double.
1980 – Stena Oil is founded.
1982 – Stena Metall’s environmental companies are founded.
1983 – Stena Metall is sold from Stena AB. New group The Stena Metall AB group with the same shareholders is formed.

A colour archive image showing a scrap car being lifted by a crane and dropped in a container for recycling.

1984 - 2000

1984 – The Group’s various businesses are incorporated.
1985 – Averhoff & Co A / S is acquired.
1989 – The fall of the Berlin Wall changes trading activities.
1989 – Stena Metall acquires Car Fragmentation.
1990s – From the ‘90s onwards our recycling operations expanded more rapidly. The Group also became providers of steel, aluminium and oil. We also acquired a small company in the growing electronics recycling industry.
1992 – Stena Miljö A / S is established in Norway.
1994 – Producer liability legislation is introduced in Sweden.
1994 – The export ban on iron and scrap metal is lifted.
1994 – Stena’s recycling of waste from electrical and electronic equipment is founded in Sweden.
1996 – Stena Miljö establishes a subsidiary in Finland.
1999 – The Stena Group doubled in size through the acquisition of the Gotthard Nilsson group.
2000-2010 – International expansion in the Nordic countries, Poland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Romania, the Czech Republic and Italy. Rapid development of R&D activities, products, complete solutions and other services for various industries.

2001 - 2016

2001 – Scrap yards are established in Russia.
2001 – Operations in Poland begin.
2003 – Establishment of fragmentation plant in Pori, Finland.
2003 – Special investment in hazardous waste, industrial waste and other operational waste
2005 – The Group’s operations are now conducted in more than 200 locations
2007 – Acquisition of Reci
2008 – The Swedish recycling companies merge into Stena Recycling.
2009 – Stena becomes Europe’s leading electronics recycler with operations in 10 countries.
2010 – The Stena Metall Group operates in 250 locations in Europe, the USA and Asia
2016 – Stena’s acquisition of IL Recycling meant that Stena Recycling strengthens its leading position in Sweden and in Poland.
2016 – Inauguration of Stena Nordic Recycling Center – Europe’s most modern recycling facility.

A proud past, a bright future

At Stena Recycling, we are proud of our past. But our focus is always on the future. Today, we take everything we have learned and use it to guide us towards a brighter, more sustainable tomorrow. Here, you can read more about how we are shaping the future of recycling.

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