Despite India being a developing country it is among the top economies of the world today. Be it infrastructure, Corporate business or IT, all are immensely contributing in bettering the nation’s economy and health. But what is the reason behind such a sudden huge growth? Businesses and ITs are there from a long time, then why not in the past but now there is a boom in India? The answer is internet and digitalization of things! The past decade has been a win-win phase for India with the advent of internet and rise in the number of internet users. And the biggest thing to happen is e-commerce! More than 50% contribution towards the economy is through E-commerce and online shopping. Because of hectic busy schedules and ease and to avoid wastage of time and money, people are opting for online transactions and home delivery facility. Everything we want today should be just a click away. There are market places for everything, be it apparels, gadgets, household items, grocery, travel, movies and uncountable more.
But still there are many sectors which are unorganized and still haven’t proceeded with its baby steps in this e-commerce industry. But the good news is many new start-ups are coming up every single day with solutions like never before and taking these lagging behind sector to a whole new level.
Truckmandi is one such online platform that was started by three friends Ankit, Anurag and Nishant. It is a marketplace for truck, where owners of the vehicles and transporters can directly connect and interact to businesses and customers looking out for their service.
The main problem with many businesses is logistics. The owners and transporters believe that there was a kind of disconnect between them and the market because of the middlemen. And irregularities and delays seemed like the common problem faced by many.
The trio who founded Truckmandi is flatmates and had regular conversations over dinner regarding this matter and the solutions that can be incorporated to overcome the problem. After doing quite a lot of research they found that logistics was a challenge as it involved timely placement and delivery of vehicles, wasted man hours, multiple middle-men and lack of presence and visibility. And all this is because there was no common platform where there could be a connection between the customers and the service providers. Truckmandi wanted to bridge this gap while at the same time reorganizing the transportation sector.
“We pitched the idea at a TLabs intro pitch session and were selected as part of the batch for their next program, where we got the proper mentorship, guidance of experts and office space to work from,” says Ankit. It is now a team of 20 members.
Ankit is an IIT Kharagpur alumnus, worked at Schlumberger as Field Engineer, and spent one and a half years in the Middle East and Russia. He had another startup, flymyfood and worked at Snapdeal in the product team. Anurag, who has worked as product and analytics manager for Snapdeal and Lenskart, is an IIT Delhi alumnus, and Nishant was working at TCS before TruckMandi happened.
Market and opportunities
The monthly transactions that happen have a run-rate value of one crore which is growing at a very fast rate of 400 percent. Truckmandi is based outside Delhi/NCR and is operational across Himachal, Punjabo Haryanan, UP and Rajasthan. Currently Truckmandi has 500 partner companies using their technology and 300 partner truck owners.
They bring the best rates from verified and reliable transporters in the shortest time possible. They engage their vendors in bidding which guarantees the best price that can be fetched from the closest service provider so that customer can avail services at the fastest possible time. GSP service in available in all the vehicles so as to ensure visibility of transactions and can be easily tracked.
There is a 2% commission charged for every transaction from the vendors. The team recently closed a deal of 50 crore deal. Reports say that the logistics market in India is set to reach INR 48,000 crore by the end of 2019. Uberization has touched every aspect of our lives.
The main challenge faced by team Truckmandi was to educate the transporters about the benefit of using technology and then ensuring best services from them at the best possible prices and also the lookout for good drivers.
“Our biggest problem, which we never really considered major, is the pervasive corruption that plagues this industry. In every company we talk to, be it an MNC or a small corporation, everyone involved in the company’s logistics makes some kind of commission through bribes and favours from those to whom they provide the final business. It is very hard to find people and companies who accept this technology as this removes such leakages from the system, but we take this as another challenge and resolve to keep the wheels rolling,” adds Ankit.