Why this ex-Paytm employee founded a B2B hyperlocal delivery startup amidst the pandemic

Based in Gurugram, Hanchens is a seven-month-old B2B hyperlocal delivery startup offering same-day delivery to the likes of JioMart, Bigbasket, Dealshare, CityMall, Modern Bazaar, and Fresh2Home, among others.

Why this ex-Paytm employee founded a B2B hyperlocal delivery startup amidst the pandemic

Wednesday November 03, 2021,

4 min Read

Indian consumers may be getting a bit too comfortable having everything delivered at their doorstep - from grocery and daily essentials to food from your favorite restaurant and home chefs. 

A fast-growing hyperlocal delivery market in the country is testament to this trend. According to Ecommerce Guru, the hyperlocal market is expected to be valued at $3,634.3 billion, growing at a CAGR 17.9 percent from 2021 to 2027. 

Gurugram-based entrepreneur Dimpy Dewan’s Hanchens is the latest entrant to the market. Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI), the B2B startup offers same-day delivery services exclusively to B2B2C and D2C companies.

The journey 

Dimpy has a mix of experience working in corporate and startup environments for over 16 years. After working at companies like Microsoft and Samsung, she led Paytm Payments Bank as a Deputy General Manager, Customer Experience, and saw the fintech platform through the demonetisation period in 2016. She also built a team of over 1,500 people operating out of seven delivery centres and enabled more than 65 API integrations for a seamless user experience. 

She was working as the director of customer experience at American Express when she decided to take an entrepreneurial plunge and quit the job in June 2020. 

Teaming up with her former colleague Abhishek Kaushik, the startup now has a team of more than 175 people, including its delivery partners who are also three-and four-wheeler drivers. 

“When you work in a high-paced organisation and then suddenly move to a corporate-like environment, that energy cannot be taken out of you. That’s when we wanted to build something of our own and solve the logistics challenge amidst the pandemic,” she tells HerStory.

Taking the operations live in February 2021, the hyperlocal delivery startup now caters to B2B customers like JioMart, Bigbasket, Dealshare, CityMall, Modern Bazaar, and Fresh2Home, among others. 

In the last seven months of operation in cities like Gurugram, Delhi, Lucknow, Faridabad, and Jaipur, the startup has fulfilled more than 100,000 orders and doubled its revenue every month. 

While it strives to provide delivery opportunities to women, it is a challenge the startup is still overcoming. There are areas and certain customer interaction that women may not feel comfortable delivering and dealing with. In such cases, it gives women to deliver pre-paid orders so that they don’t have to face customers directly. 

The startup earns a revenue from fixed fee per order which is determined by product category, type of vehicle, and location, among other factors.

Funding and the way forward

Although players have increased in the logistics market, Dimpy says most are focussed on metro cities. “Most are confined to about seven metro cities, but ‘India’ is not metro.  The core of India, as much as 80 percent, lies in non-metro areas,” she says, adding that its focus on scaling in both metro and lower tier cities gives it an edge over the competitors in the market.  

“It is the experience and last-mile delivery that matters. The users don’t sign up for platforms hoping for a Rs 5 to 10 discount. Their idea is that even if you take Re 1 extra from me, do that but make sure the delivery is on time and the products are intact,” she explains. 

Started with an initial investment of Rs 14 lakh from the duo’s savings, the startup went on to raise an undisclosed seed round in August this year and plans on closing another round of funding worth $1.5 million in the next two months. 

Although the startup is likely to achieve profitability much sooner compared to the time large aggregators usually take, she says cash flow will always remain a challenge. 

With a long-term goal to be the one-stop solution for express mile deliveries and warehousing needs for B2B clients, it hopes to expand to more than 400 Indian cities in the next three years. 

Edited by Megha Reddy