Rhitman Majumder, Co-Founder and CEO of Pickrr talk about how logistics solutions are changing during the Covid-19 era and how the company is responding to this changing need of retailers.
Pickrr started its operations in 2015. How has been your journey so far?
Founded in 2015, Pickrr was a logistics startup founded by Gaurav Mangla, Ankit Kaushik, and Rhitiman Majumder. In 2015, Pickrr raised its first funding round from VC firm Palaash Venture, Gaana.com’s CEO Prashan Agrawal, BNT Talbros Group’s MD Karan Talwar, and other HNIs. In 2016, Pickrr raised its second round of funding from Hong Kong-based investment firm Swastika Company Ltd.
What all solutions do you offer the retail industry?
We offer consolidated logistic services to our clients Our SaaS product offers – Logistics Analytics Dashboard, NDR Management Tool, Real-Time Tracking Tool, Seamless Integration Along with major channel partners, ML-based courier suggestion tool, Consolidated invoicing, Future cash flow visibility, 10+ Multi-dimensional reporting that includes zone-wise, courier wise and product wise performance reports
Apart from our Free of cost SaaS product, we provide Logistics consulting services, single point POCs to solve any logistics issues in real-time as a part of our offerings to our clients, these are again free of cost. Our add-on features include- Next day delivery, Hyperlocal delivery, Bulk/FTL transportation facilities, and more.
Rates: We just charge on a per order basis, charges are common independent of the courier partner used. No extra charge for our service/no monthly/yearly subscription fees.
What changes have you observed during the COVID-19 era? How have you changed your offerings to respond to the same?
In the initial days of the lockdown the whole non-essential category which formed a major chunk of our business was banned which impacted our business. Although it has started to improve a bit after May 4th it is still restricted as deliveries are still restricted to Orange and Green zones. The most hit categories- Apparels and Electronics formed as much as 70% of our business pre-lockdown. Since then, we have strategically moved to essentials categories like Food, Ayurveda, and medicines and looking to meet our pre lockdown numbers by next month
Our product categories have evolved from the time lockdown and restrictions have started. We have seen a 10x increase in the number of edible/ food categories, around 6x increase in Ayurveda related products, and around 5x increase in medicine/health-related products that are being dispatched through us.
As our sellers evolved during these tough times, we did too. We introduced contact-less deliveries and hyperlocal deliveries so that customers can get orders in a timely and safe manner. Unlike some of the logistics companies, we have not been charging any additional costs in this period so that our sellers too do not have to increase product prices in these tough times. With so much confusion regarding which products are allowed, which locations are serviceable, safety concerns, etc. we started Logistics consulting for any online seller that contacts us.
In terms of new initiatives for our customers we have introduced various new functionalities to help sellers in the ‘COVID era’ of Logistics which includes:
Contactless Delivery – This feature has allowed sellers to safely deliver their products without any human contact.
Hyperlocal Delivery – Hyperlocal delivery has become the new norm owing to the current situation and restrict movement from or to offline stores. Pickrr has included hyperlocal deliveries in its list of services as well.
Logistics consulting- With ever-changing regulations and confusions in the logistics space. Our experienced consultants are just a mail/call/ message away to solve any logistics-related concerns
How have consumer preferences evolved in the COVID-19 era?
Consumers are now more focused on safety, and once that trust is built by a brand we have been seeing repeat purchases especially in the medicine and food category.
Preference in terms of categories is obvious Apparels as a category has gone down, Ayurved products have been selling a lot even when non-essential product deliveries have opened up
What market factors drove the development of such a solution? What is the demand for such solutions?
The idea popped up at a random meeting I had with Gaurava and Ankit, when they had just exited their earlier venture. They were looking to do something in the logistics space. We started discussing the lack of transparency and highly varying prices that courier companies charge for the same orders, Gaurav was confident that a lot of the issues can be solved with an aggregation based product bringing different courier partners on the same platform. We started with C2C operations heavy model and soon shifted to a B2B tech-heavy model.
Who are you, clients? What kind of partnership arrangement do you have with them?
Pickrr provides its unique technology and API integration across all platforms (Shopify, Unicommerce, Magento, Prestashop, Vinculum, and all major platforms) and serviceability across 26000+ pin codes through all national logistic provider.
How much does the solution cost?
We just charge a single rate card like any normal courier company. No extra charge for our service/subscription fees. Charges depend on the source and delivery location, the weight of the product, mode of transport, type of payment (prepaid or COD)
How are you making the best use of technology?
Even when we are in the logistics business which is conventionally considered heavy on operations, we have always been a technology company. Our product has been built from scratch in-house. Following are some of our features that have been made possible due to our tech capabilities-
- Real-time order tracking
- Real-time NDR
- Integration with all e-commerce platforms
Apart from these we have highly evolved internal dashboards that our team uses for scheduling pickups, maintaining sales pipeline, and across client reports to judge performance. All of these have helped us scale massively without increasing our team size.
Do you cater only to retail? If not, what percentage of your revenues come from retail?
Around 90% of our revenue comes from online retail, the other 10% comes from intercompany transport and offline retail.
What are the current trends you are witnessing in this space?
One of the major trends we have seen in our market is the growth of D2C brands. As far as smart logistics are concerned, we see that our sellers do not want to have multiple parties on board for logistics and want a single company to take care of B2B/B2C operations, warehousing, scheduling, etc. so that they can focus on their core operations. We have been able to provide a one-stop solution to an extent and are moving towards a complete solution every day.
What are the challenges you face?
We used to face a very peculiar challenge in our earlier days, as and when our sellers got to a considerable size, they used to stop working with us as they did not see an advantage in terms of cost. Now, we have built the platform in such a way that even large sellers (>5000 daily orders) see a huge value either in terms of cost advantage or simplified operations due to our product and services.
How do you see the market growing? What are the growth drivers?
D2C brands in India have been on a rise and it is no longer a monopoly for Flipkart and Amazon as far as marketplaces are concerned. New single category brands have been getting funding and have been expanding at an exceptional rate.
In terms of the number of orders we assume around 6lac shipments from such sellers each day. This roughly translates to a $300M annual market for logistics companies just from a single brand/marketplace business.
What are your future plans?
Our plan is to consolidate all possible logistics services at a single platform. All tech-related services are being built in-house and all operations related services are being offered through our partners. We are actively looking at warehousing as an avenue for growth in the near future.