Tell us about the idea behind setting up an agri-tech start-up in India’s fragmented supply chain industry?
I started Ninjacart in 2015 with my Co-founders, Sharath Loganathan, Vasudevan Chinnathambi, Kartheeswaran KK, Ashutosh Vikram and Sachin Jose, as a hyper-local B2C grocery model. We aimed to deliver fresh produce to consumers in less than sixty minutes. The goal was to move retail produce online, helping grocery store owners expand their customer base as well as making it convenient for buyers to have fresh vegetables delivered to their doorstep. After operating for six months in Bengaluru city, we realised that the demand for online grocery was at its peak, but the supply side was fragmented. It was the farmers and the retailers struggling to meet the demand. Farmers had to sell their food at a low rate to intermediaries, while retailers were forced to compromise on quality, which impacted the end consumers. Considering all these factors, we decided to make a transition from B2C to B2B, where we started engaging with farmers directly to standardise the process at all levels of the food supply chain.
What are the challenges you faced during your journey?
Ninjacart was one of the first agri-tech start-ups in India to identify the pain points of the supply chain. The transition was difficult as we faced various challenges executing the business model as there was no reference or example that we could look up. It was easier for farmers to work with a known face than an agri-tech business, so gaining trust wasn’t easy either. We did overnight visits to mandis (farm markets) to understand the framework because of the complexity in the supply chain management. And it took us almost a year to find an approach that would work. There was a great deal of learning and growth for the entire team. We made ourselves aware of every minor and major difficulty that could obstruct the development of the infrastructure in the long term. One of the first triumphs as an agri-tech start-up in India was leveraging technology to address difficulties and increase efficiencies of the end-to-end supply chain. We can confidently claim that we have successfully eliminated intermediaries in the food supply chain, backed by cutting-edge technology and analytics.
At present, we operate in all 11 metro cities, transporting fresh produce within 12 hours across India. Furthermore, we conduct farmer outreach programmes throughout networks to identify their existing expertise and provide up-skilling ways to keep them up to date with recent market trends. We also provide retail outlets with a one-stop shop for all of their supply needs, allowing them to eliminate the burden of dealing with many intermediaries by accepting safe payments.
What have been major growth hacks in the early days of Ninjacart?
Ninjacart is India’s leading B2B fresh produce supply chain company, a pioneer in the tech-driven supply chain space for fresh vegetables and fruits in India. To standardise the process at all levels, we use sophisticated algorithms, leverage big data, predictive analytics, and a mobile-based platform. We ensure that high-quality fresh produce gets delivered without compromising the efficiency of the food supply chain.
We carry tons of fresh produce every day and connect farmers with stores, restaurants, and small business owners directly. Everyone at Ninjacart is given an app and stakeholders must follow the directions in that app. Our communication with farmers is absolutely transparent. We have developed specific apps to aid farmers with demand predictions, harvest planning and determining the value indent. We assist them in finding the most appropriate ways of farming and we inform them about better varieties of seeds and suggest sustainable harvesting practices.
Ninjacart’s paperless supply chain also connects farmer produce to retailers. Technology is utilised to reduce the needless intermediary cost of middlemen, lowering the risk of quality deterioration in fresh produce. It contributes to increasing the value and providing consistent delivery at the right time and the right price to the consumer while also paying the farmers a fair price.
We also provide convenience to restaurants and retailers by allowing them to inspect the quality and freshness of vegetables and fruits without having to go to the market. Our just-in-time logistics system prioritises speed and reliability in all processes. The infrastructure we developed has decreased the time it takes for produce to go from farm to store, allowing farmers to generate more revenue and build a better economic life.
As a supply chain company, what roles do technology and data play in your end-to-end delivery solutions?
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Hyundai Showcases Commitment To Electrification In India
HYUNDAI MOTOR INDIA LIMITED (HMIL), country’s first smart mobility solutions provider and largest exporter since inception, today announced its roadmap to drive the electric mobility revolution in India with the expansion of its line-up to 6 Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) for the Indian market by 2028. Further, Hyundai will also introduce its dedicated BEV Platform – E-GMP in India, showcasing its commitment towards smart Indian customers.
A NEW WAVE OF CONTINUOUS CONTROLS MONITORING IS HERE
Continuous Controls Monitoring (CCM) comprises a set of technologies that work to help an organisation cut down losses by constantly monitoring controls. This insightful article takes us through ‘Traditional Controls Monitoring Vs Continuous Controls Monitoring’
ENERGY, FLEET MANAGEMENT AND LAST MILE CONNECTIVITY TAKE THE SPOTLIGHT
Energy, fleet management and last mile connectivity take the spotlight at Volvo India Innovation Award 2021
THIS TIME FOR AFRICA!
Over the past two decades, low-cost manufacturing has transformed China, India and a group of other developing countries. Now, it’s Africa’s turn. That will sound unlikely to the many people who see Africa as synonymous with extreme poverty, conflict and instability. But anyone who understands the nuances of the vast continent knows that African countries are well placed to grab a bigger share of global manufacturing in the coming years
A NEW COMPONENTS MANUFACTURING FACILITY
Alstom, a global leader in sustainable and green mobility solutions recently inaugurated its new components manufacturing facility in Coimbatore. This is the largest components manufacturing facility in Asia and is dedicated to improving industrial efficiency in manufacturing components for various prestigious national and international projects.
igus Announces Strong Growth Plans For India
igus, the global leader in Motion Plastics, has announced an aggressive growth plan and strategy in the backdrop of 20 successful years of operations in India.
AS CLEAR AS CRYSTAL
An insightful look at a new generation of capable robotic products, built from the ground up to operate based on computer vision input and AI rather than rigid programming
R S Sachdeva, COO - Eicher Trucks And Buses gives us in-depth insight on the inner workings of the joint venture between Volvo & Eicher and maps out their recipe for success
Vedanta Aluminium Invites Partners for Aluminium Park at Odisha
VEDANTA ALUMINIUM BUSINESS, India’s largest producer of aluminium and its value-added products, extended an invitation to aluminium producers at the Enterprise Odisha 2021 event for partnering in its Aluminium Park project which will come up at Jharsuguda, Odisha.
“INDIA DOESN'T NEED ARTIFICIAL PUSH FOR EVs”
He is the most passionate ministers of the current Modi regime. He is responsible for India’s dream run to achive 40 km per day road infrastructure and also connecting India through his ambitious national waterways plan. For him, now, e-mobility is the future. In an exclusive interview Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister, Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways, Government of India talks about range of issues – from charging infrastructure to government’s assistance at various stages— that will take India’s e-mobility dream to a next level. While speaking with Rahul Kamat, he urge India’s automakers to ensure maximum recovery of plastics and other composites materials on scrapping of vehicles
THE ANIMAL-HUMAN CONFLICT
RAJESH MENON is a wildlife photographer and environmental conservationist living in North India. Here he shares some ideas for solutions to the animalhuman conflicts that are apparent in all regions of the world today.
Passion and Love for Community
Dr. Prakash Tyagi is the executive director of Gramin Vikas Vigyan Samiti (GRAVIS), an NGO dedicated to working in impoverished rural regions of India, including the Thar desert, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, and Bundelkhand. In part 2 of this interview with Kashish Kalwani, he speaks about how things have changed due to the pandemic and the importance of passion and love for community.
Modern Vinyasa FOR THE MASSES
Teacher Calvin Corzine brings a functional yet challenging approach to yoga with an emphasis on making everyday movement easier.
India Is on a Tear
Massive modernization presents opportunities for investors.
Love, Non-violence, and Truth
DR. PRAKASH TYAGI is the Executive Director of Gramin Vikas Vigyan Samiti (GRAVIS), an NGO dedicated to working in impoverished rural regions of India, including the Thar Desert, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, and Bundelkhand. In part 1 of this interview with KASHISH KALWANI, he speaks about applying the Gandhian principles of love, non-violence, and truth to support communities in need.
WISDOM FROM MY FATHER
The tempo 1 was ready to depart. It was a short 30-minute journey from Bhatkal to Uppunda, a sleepy village in coastal Karnataka, India. My father, sister, and I were traveling together.
GM's Exit From India Hits a Roadblock
The long-delayed sale of its plants to a Chinese company faces local labor and political opposition
ELIZABETH DENLEY has been a student of both science and spirituality all her life. Trained as a scientist, she turned her field of inquiry and research skills to the field of meditation and spirituality after starting the Heartfulness practices in the late 80s. Here she shares some thoughts on the importance of selfacceptance.
The New Storytelling:We Are All Indigenous Global Citizens
WAKANYI HOFFMAN is a Global Education Specialist and founder of the African Folktales Project. In Part 2 of her interview with SARA BUBBER, Wakanyi shares the value of storytelling, passing down wisdom through generations, her Kikuyu culture, and how we are all indigenous global citizens.
The Vaccine's Last Mile Problem
India is racing to vaccinate its villages, including many in remote and desperately poor areas where suspicion of the government’s motives runs deep