How online logistics platform Trukky is bringing transparency in the trucking ecosystemLibza Mannan
Leveraging the power of technology, the web and app-based online logistics platform offers modernistic and simplified way of truck hiring and tracking at fingertips. With rate index, live pricing and a three-step booking feature, Trukky aims to bring in more ease and transparency in the trucking ecosystem.
“The idea came up when one of my friends was seeking help in getting her goods moved locally and when I tried to get quotes from the market, I was surprised to get rates with huge variance and with no service delivery guarantee. We thought why not build an app for truckers, but since the segment was huge and fragmented, we decided to start with intracity logistics in 2015,” recalls Subhasish Das, Co-founder of Trukky.
However, as per the All India Motor Transport Congress, there are close to 12 million trucks in India and about 90 percent of them belong to single-truck owners — small entrepreneurs — in small towns. This is what makes it difficult to integrate technology into their lives.
Trukky is an aggregator and online logistics platform, delivering agricultural products to heavy industrial products in more than 50 locations in India. The brand aims to deliver on-demand quality service at a competitive price and back every shipment with technology and customer support service. Facilitating online booking and payment through mobile app and web, Trukky offers a single-stop solution for pan-India deliveries, catering to all logistics requirements of a customer on the go. Though the brand’s primary business is focussed on load sharing service, it is not just an aggregator of trucks but also a space for both full truckload and part load.
Using analytics, the startup is reducing operational costs and bringing in fair pricing for customers. Establishing a direct connection between drivers and fleet owners, its platform is eradicating the broker margin, thereby reducing customer costs. Besides, the web/mobile applications have made truck hiring feasible in small cities.
The customers, as well as drivers, can use the applications to join the Trukky network. Trukky Intercity Logistics app allows customers to do truck booking in three simple steps whereas Trukky vendors’ app is designed for the partners. With a network of over 5,000 truckers, Trukky services more than 2,000 clients from various industries including paper and pulp, FMCG, cement, agricultural products, automobile, manufacturing, e-commerce, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, among others. In order to keep the customers at par with the freight pricing trends, Trukky has also launched a rate index, TRaI.
Launched in 2015, Trukky is the brainchild of Subhasish Das (35) and Saswat Sahu (28). Subhashish has earlier worked with TFS and has over 10 years of experience in operations and logistics whereas Saswat has more than eight years of experience in product development for domestic and international clients.
“I met Saswat through a common friend while I was working with TFS and since he belongs to a family that runs transportation business, it clicked well — we could visualise the product and decided to work on it together,” highlights Subhasish.
Their startup claims to be creating a niche in the industry with instant pricing, on-demand booking of service, and load sharing. Subhasish highlights that a number of modules – booking, pricing, supply, dispatch and routing, payment and analytics modules — make it a one-of-a-kind platform
While starting out, the founders figured out that a number of challenges plagued the industry, and pricing was the key issue. So, the team started working on the various dynamic variables that affect the pricing and developed a pricing algorithm to ensure instant dynamic pricing to customers both for load sharing as well as full truckload.
Decoding the fragmented cargo industry in India
The road freight volume in India is forecast to be 2,211.24 billion freight ton kilometre, growing at 4.7 percent. As per the Government target, an additional 50,000 km of national highway is likely to be added by 2020. The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways plans to award close to 5,000 km to private companies during 2016-17, which is worth approximately US $7.69 billion.
Investors believe that these modern-day logistics companies will offer quick returns because they can acquire a lot of customers. Profitability is not important for the moment as growth in the number of people using technology is what matters to investors.
New-age companies like Rivigo and BlackBuck have raised large sums of capital. Rivigo has raised $115 million and expect to raise more this year while Blackbuck has already raised $100 million. Both companies are eyeing the trucking ecosystem. Then there are companies like Delhivery, which is managing intra-city delivery and handling warehousing as a service.
Trukky’s platform allows agents to understand movements of trucks from one city to another and book return loads. It also allows clients to manage part-truck and full-truck loads. Moreover, it intends to increase asset (truck) utilisation for customers and drivers and is reducing prices for brands.
“Our product is a key differentiator and most of our focus goes back to the product to not only make Trukky scalable but also to solve problems,” claims Saswat.
Plans for future
Backed by a 26-member team, Trukky is currently doing around 400 transactions per month with an average ticket size of Rs 15,000. Going ahead, the brand is eyeing to close this financial year with above Rs 18 crore in revenue and more than 5,000 transactions per month.
By end of 2018, Trukky aims to cover all major and minor industrial zones across India and expand its transport capacity to 50,000 tons of cargo every month.
“We have been focusing more on the product so far to make it highly scalable along with a good year over year growth. Now our focus would be aggressively on customer acquisition and also on expanding pan India in next 18 months,” adds Subhasish.
Since 2015, the startup has raised $450,000 in two rounds from startup founders and marquee investors in investment banking, technology, and manufacturing. Both the rounds were facilitated through the online funding platform for early-stage investing in India, LetsVenture.