India’s logistics sector continues to be unfazed by the current global macro-economic headwinds amid rebound in consumer sentiments on the back of unprecedented sector-agnostic festive demand after a pandemic-induced lull of two years.
Supply chain and logistics companies are doubling on stocks, stepping up supplies, hiring more resource and ramping up warehousing and delivery to meet the sudden surge in demand despite inflationary pressures impacting cost of fuel and raw materials.
“There is a sudden spike in demand in all the sectors around the festive season. Supply chains were not designed for such a huge capacity load. We are increasingly preparing our customers to equip themselves in advance with supplies in place to cater to a sudden rise in demand during the festival. From ready working capital and raw material availability to inventory management we are providing them every solution to cater to the unprecedented demand for raw materials,” said Ankit Jain, co-founder, Aksum Trademart, a supply chain as service (SCaS) company.
Some logistics players went on the stock-up mode months before the festive season in a bid to stave off demand-supply mismatch during peak festival time.
“Stocking up was difficult a few months ago in the wake of rising prices across the board. But we increased our warehousing capacity by almost 25% to cater to the increased demand. We have been leveraging our proprietary backend technology for better just-in-time order management as well as optimizing inventory levels and logistics costs,” said Akash Hegde, co-founder, ShakeDeal, a B2B distributor and procurement solution provider for industrial goods and supplies.
Companies also witnessed steep rise in freight rates as increasing demand for raw materials continuously overwhelmed cargo carriers.
Imthiaz, CEO and co-founder, Raaho, a full-truck freight marketplace said, “The current festive season has led to a surge in truck suppliers on our platform by about 25%. This year, intercity freight rates are witnessing northward movement by almost 18%, fuelled by limited supply and urgency around time-bound festive deliveries. The north-bound traffic is seeing a rise in the movement of electronics while the south is witnessing some upward movement in food items.”
Supply chain professionals are also applying principles of artificial intelligence to prevent supply chain disruption while catering to the unprecedented festive demand.
“The AI powered systems help maximize territory optimization, routing capabilities and resource utilization thereby expanding our serviceability and reducing logistics costs. We have seen reduction in trip volumes by 6% that significantly drives sustainable logistics operations. Additionally, these capabilities allow logistics businesses to shrink mid-mile and last-mile logistics costs by 12% and 23%, boost on-time deliveries by 24%, reduce customer complaints by 28%, and increase delivery Net Promoter Score by 18%”, said Soham Chokshi, CEO and co-founder, Shipsy, an AI powered supply chain solution provider.
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