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Logistics firms expect robust growth on increased demand in festive season

With festive season stoking demand for consumer items, logistics firms expect stellar growth in the remaining part of the fiscal and plan to substantially increase their headcount

Logistics start-ups expect robust growth going ahead as festive season begins

Festive season starting this month is expected to give further fillip to the logistics and transport business

Highlights

  • Logistics firms such as Gxpress and Shiprocket remain bullish on growth in volume and plan to increase their headcounts
  • While Gxpress plans to grow its staff strength four-fold to 200 in the next few months, Shiprocket has already increased its team size by 50% and plans are afoot to add more
  • Some of the categories which have fared better in the last few months since gradual opening of the economy are apparels, consumer electronics, pharma and lifestyle items
  • Most logistics start-ups have reported double-digit growth in their volume following gradual opening of the economy

With festive season stoking demand for consumer items, logistics firms expect stellar growth in the remaining part of the fiscal and plan to substantially increase their headcount.

Some of the categories which have fared better in the last few months since the gradual opening of the economy are apparels, consumer electronics, pharma and lifestyle items. Tech-oriented logistics firms providing delivery solutions to e-commerce companies such as Flipkart and Amazon hope to see the momentum to continue even as a section of economists remain cautious about economic recovery.

"We closed FY20 with a total business of about Rs 18 crore. We are targeting a total turnover of Rs 50 crore this financial year. We are going for Series A investment and looking at raising $5-6 million for expanding our network and business. In a few months time, we would increase our team strength to 200 from 50 now," says Praveen Vashistha, founder and director of Gxpress.

Gxpress offers a gamut of logistics services such as delivery, warehousing, distribution, labelling and retail management among others. With consumer preference shifting towards online from in-store shopping due to fears of Coronavirus infection, it has proved to be a big shot in the arm for logistics start-ups. Most firms have reported double-digit growth in their volume.

Festive season starting this month is expected to give further fillip to the logistics and transport business.

"In September this year compared to September last year we have seen a growth of almost 25% which is quite unusual at any point of time but very unusual because of Covid. We expected it to be flat. We are seeing a similar situation in October," said Abhik Mitra, MD & CEO, Spoton Logistics.

Spoton Logistics is into B2B space serving companies like Amazon and Flipkart directly and also their sellers that ship their products through the warehouses of the e-tailers. Riding high on the demand, the firm is moving to bigger hubs in Kolkata and Chennai but Mitra termed as business as usual.

Saahil Goel, CEO & Co-founder of Shiprocket has also been equally bullish and has major hiring plans to meet additional business.

Goel said that Shiprocket has already increased its team size by more than 50% this year adding more than 100 people post the lockdown.

"All these people have been interviewed virtually and are currently working remotely. We hired in advance of the festive season to manage the business spikes. Currently we are aggressively hiring in our engineering and logistics team in preparation for new products we will be launching in 2021. We expect to add another 50 people to these teams in the next few months," he said.

Also read: Logistics startups hopeful of festive season; see COVID-19 vaccine delivery as opportunity

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