IntrCity on the journey to make travel comfortable

In a recent conversation with YourStory’s Daily Dispatch powered by HSBC, Kapil Raizada, Co-founder, IntrCity, talks about the company’s journey so far and future plans.

Noida-based smart bus booking platform IntrCity has been pushing the pedal of innovation by converting ordinary buses to smart in a bid to provide passengers with a better travel experience.

Kapil Raizada, Co-founder, says that for IntrCity, despite the hindrances, 2021 was a good year and the company grew almost 300 percent year-on-year.

“The waves do impact travel temporarily but if we take a bigger picture there is clearly a shift happening from unbranded to branded mobility,” he says. Because of the consumer shift in preference based on factors such as trust, there has been healthy growth from a brand perspective.

He adds that at the macro level, the market has been broadly flat for the last two years but there is a phenomenon of consolidation happening at the individual level.

“Smaller players have exited the system and the bigger players have grown bigger,” says Kapil.

Customers and travelers now value reliability, trust, and hygiene as they have become important factors and thus there is a shift in the choice of the partners the travelers want to travel with.

“Bus industry particularly was in need of standardisation and consolidation and that process is happening now,” says Kapil.

Speaking about roadmaps for 2022, Kapil mentions that the impact of the pandemic is expected to be lesser this year as compared to 2020 and 2021. He expects the growth at IntrCity to be stronger than last year. IntrCity is present across 16 states in India and they cover the main hubs with some Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities. “We plan to go much deeper into Tier 2 and Tier 3 this year,” he says.

He explains that IntrCity upgrades the entire travel experience that travelers have across India and works towards converting normal buses to IntrCity smart buses. “Every operator that we know of is keen to upgrade from a normal bus to an IntrCity smart bus,” he says. The current focus of IntrCity is to take the brand wider and deeper.

The brand's current goal is to continue to deliver the same experience that they are known for and reach out to more consumers. Apart from that, they plan on expanding to newer routes and going to more Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.

Talking about the investments scenario, he says that their inherent business is not very capital intensive. “The business generates about 20 percent positive gross margins for us,” says Kapil. Their current focus is to expand fast enough to attract demand onto their buses and to ensure that the operators who are coming on board receive a good experience.

“Our challenge right now is more in terms of how fast we can scale while ensuring our partners grow and the experience remains the way it is,” says Kapil.

In terms of revenue targets, he says that in December their revenue generated by the company was around Rs 20 crore a month and this year it expects more than 3x growth. Lastly, he says that the IntrCity is in talks with several investors to raise funds, which it expects to announcing by Q1 of FY22.

Edited by Affirunisa Kankudti