CSCRC is the industry leader in shopping cart retrieval because it took its mission statement seriously and sought to provide an efficient, cost-effective and professional service that replaced the costly and unaccountable system that operated before we were created. Over time, we built a network of contractors and sub-contractors who patrol neighborhoods across thousands of miles of public right-of-way in California and Nevada. We aggressively implemented technologies that helped us manage the complex system and allocate resources. We are always looking for better ways of providing our service.
Our business begins when a cart is removed from a retail store's parking lot. The person who takes the cart may be a pedestrian customer who needs a way to take his or her groceries or products home. The cart may be stolen by someone who sells the cart to a competitor for their use. Increasingly, thieves have begun stealing shopping carts (which cost the retailer as much as $300) so that they can obtain a few dollars per cart from an unscrupulous recycler. In some cities, aggressive public works employees have even been ordered to seize or destroy carts found on public streets, thereby exacerbating losses to retailers. Some retailers have installed expensive locking-wheel systems for tens of thousands of dollars to prevent theft but have found that resourceful thieves have developed ways to bypass the systems or that market share at a location decreases because pedestrian customers are left without a means of getting purchases home.
Most abandoned carts are identified by our sub-contractors, who patrol the neighborhood surrounding retail stores and areas that commonly attract carts, like bus stops and bottle redemption centers. Increasingly, we have begun encouraging residents, businesses and governments to help us quickly retrieve carts by notifying us via voice, email or the CartSnap iPhone app. Knowing a specific location means our drivers can get the cart off the street even faster.
We have developed a network of contractors to patrol our service areas in three states. Each service area is broken into geographic segments called grids. Each grid represents approximately the area that can be effectively patrolled by a driver in an eight hour work day. Most drivers service the same grids on a regular basis, so they become familiar with the layout of a community and become proficient in locating abandoned carts during patrols. They take carts back to clients' retail stores and obtain a visual inspection of the carts from an employee before unloading them from the truck. A numbered receipt is given to the store and the contractor submits the tickets to CSCRC for payment. Our agents frequently monitor contractors and grids, as well as communicate with store managers, to ensure that our clients receive excellent customer service.
When contractors submit tickets to us, we review them for errors or fraud and the specific data points are entered into our billing system. Retail stores and municipalities are sent detailed bills that provide specific information on cart numbers and dates. Our billing reports can be tailored to meet each client's specific needs.