Should you be buying a second-hand smartphone?

Phone being refurbishedImage copyright
Back Market

French entrepreneur, Thibaud Hug de Larauze, looks down at his laptop and taps a few keys.

“So today we have 200,000-plus smartphones available to sell,” he tells me.

None of those smartphones are new, instead they have been refurbished, a process involving checks, repairs and cleaning.

Once the phones meet the required standard they can then be sold with a one-year warranty on his company’s website, Back Market, which operates in European countries plus the US.

Based in France, Back Market sells electronics across Europe and the United States. While smartphones are the big sellers, his website lists everything from coffee makers, laptops, to irons.

Formed six years ago by Mr Hug de Larauze and two partners, Back Market does not refurbish the products itself, instead it provides a marketplace for hundreds of other firms to sell their used goods.

It is one of many firms

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