In an interview with CNBC-TV18, Shashi Kiran Shetty, Chairman, Allcargo Logistics, ECU Worldwide and Gati, Vineet Agarwal, MD, Transport Corporation of India & President, ASSOCHAM shed light on the logistics scenario in the country amid the COVID backdrop.
Agarwal mentioned that the status of logistics has changed in the country over the last few months. He believes supply chain for companies is now viewed as an irreplaceable asset. Going ahead, Agarwal expects to see interest in the industry from international players as well.
He said, "During the COVID pandemic, there has been a lot of changes within the logistics sector and it has come about in the forefront. The whole status of logistics in our country has definitely changed in the last few months."
"I think it's the overall opportunity that has come about that logistics being such a dominant opportunity for companies makes a big difference. There are lots of great opportunities and India being such a hot country right now globally as well, we will definitely see interest from international players also going forward. So there is a level of M&A but I think there are two types of it. One more localized and one more strategic," he added.
Meanwhile, Shetty explained his take on the space. He believes investments in logistics, tech and infra is aiding growth in the industry. According to him, profitability for the sector as a whole is improving as well.
"A lot of infrastructural development is also taking place, which is helping the whole logistics movement to be far more easier. To add to that, also the technology, which all the companies like us are investing in to make sure that the entire supply chain becomes far more friendly and easier for people to use," he said.
He further explained, "The supply chain is also kind of in a disarray and that is leading to better margins. Profitability is going up."
On new-age logistics companies, he said that he doesn’t see them impacting the existing players. Infact, he is of the opinion that the new-age players will find it capex- intensive and difficult if they wish to disrupt the existing players.
He said, "I don't think the new-age companies are going to be such a big threat for established players like us, because it is very difficult to disrupt established players, particularly the ones who are well organized, and who are also digitizing their businesses, making investments in warehouse infrastructure, container freight station infrastructure etc."
"So disrupting anything like that is almost impossible, because this is a high density business and this business is continuously growing year after year," he explained.
Watch the video for the full interview.