The acquisition of material handling company NEROC in 1992 marked the entry into a new era. Before this acquisition, all of TOMRA’s revenues had come from sales and service of RVMs. TOMRA now begun an effort to evolve its business model into the full container recycling value chain, which includes collection, pick-up, processing, material trading, recycling and production of new containers.
During the 1990s, measures were taken to improve efficiency and reduce costs. While the most significant was the gathering of all production in the new headquarters in Norway, efforts were also begun to make the production assembly method more efficient by allowing for delivery of machine components only when an actual order was being prepared for assembly.
In the last five years of the decade, TOMRA’s annual revenues increased from 501 million NOK to 2.1 billion NOK, representing an average annual increase of 46 percent. The most significant factor behind this growth was TOMRA’s growing presence in the United States. By 1999, sales in the US accounted for more than half of total revenues.
On the technology side, a new milestone was reached in 1997 with the launch of the T-600. Not since the launch of the Tomra SP in 1977 had the market been introduced to a greater leap in RVM technology. Incorporating a number of innovations including a new container recognition system, horizontal container in-feed, a built-in modem and an advanced graphics display, the T-600 introduced a more versatile and user-friendly platform that could easily be configured to meet the needs of retail stores.
By the end of the decade, TOMRA had developed into a truly international corporation, with over 1,700 employees working in 34 different countries and 46 separate markets.