In a transport market which is witnessing an unimaginable number of companies entering the fleet tracking and management space, it takes a considerable amount of effort to come out on top. Set up in 2007, Novire Technologies has become a well-known brand in the fleet management sector. Uma Rajan, Senior Partner and Founder, and Suresh Sachdev, CEO, Novire Technologies, speak on the company, its success in the market, future plans and more.
Give us a background about Novire Technologies in terms of its inception and products and services offered. Why do you consider yourself a leading player in your field?
Rajan: Novire was successful in implementing the 'Make in India' concept when its first device was launched in 2011. Visibility across the entire company's supply chain and planning processes helps a company achieve its goals more efficiently while using fewer resources, cutting wastages and using manpower wisely. This is the essence of what we do in Novire.
Novire Technologies came into existence in 2007. Considering the fact that we survived the 2008 crash (and still grew during the downturn) speaks of the leaps and bounds we have made. Novire solutions were conceived by Hiten Varia, Suresh Sachdev and myself. Hiten and Suresh realised soon that in order to make corporations more agile and become faster in sensing and responding to market complexities and speed, they needed to be more than just a world-class supply chain company and needed to do much more in the'Sense and Respond' space. Furthermore, the digital space was rapidly growing and hence Novire was born and today we have been able to create some real amazing value-generating solutions for all the three main stakeholders, namely, the company, transporters and the end-customer.
Today, with CEO Suresh Sachdev, COO Prabhu Natrajan and me as the Senior Partner and Founder, Novire is easily seen as a leading brand in the'Sense and Response' space.
Novire's biggest strength has been to ensure that technology platforms and intelligent business analytics help and enable cross-functionality and visibility across a company's business processes.
We believe we are game changers and spend a lot of time helping clients cut down on costs, time and bring efficiencies into their planning cycle times by giving them real-time visibility and accurate information, with intelligent'what-if' analysis. We do this by tracking real time all the in-bound and out-bound material and products and integrating our just-in-time real tracking of assets, with the company's business processes and ERP. All in all, we make it a collaborative process between the company, the transporters and the end customers, creating a flexible and agile supply chain. We have based our solution around their pain points and developed the value proposition.
Naturally, we decided to connect and integrate products and assets produced by the company into its business processes. We believe this involves people, systems and physical products. Real business value comes from context and correlations between data analytics, intelligent business planning and visibility through your entire planning processes. We use GPS tracking, RFID and other technologies which are making tracking of equipment easier to manage. But the real business value comes from context and correlations between data and interactions of the above three.
Over the years, we have integrated with all the ERPs of the world including SAP, JDE, OTM, Microsoft Dynamics, etc.
We are witnessing growing competition in the field of fleet management, GPS tracking and related services. How is Novire Technologies different from competition and what are your USPs?
Sachdev: We don't see ourselves as a hardware player only. One of our biggest strengths is we provide analytics services that help companies and transporters work with better visibility, which leads to more informed decision making that further ensures intelligent planning and adoption of best practices.
In our tenure, we have seen more GPS companies being shut down than the new ones being set up. Like most of the GPS companies in India today, even Novire, when it started, imported devices from China, installed software, and sold it to clients. But the life of these devices and the effectiveness and efficiency of these solutions were extremely low. In order to overcome this, we today can proudly say that we make our own devices, install our own firmware in these devices and the application for desktop and mobile viewing is also made by us. Similarly, we have our own service network pan-India.
What is your current customer base and how do you plan to expand it?
Rajan: We are the market leaders in many industrial segments with over 25,000 devices installed pan-India; over 12,000 coming in this fiscal year itself. Almost all BSE-listed companies are using Novire Solutions. We have currently entered into the IoT solutions space.
Considering the massive size of the transport industry in our country and given the fact that most of the fleets are in their early days when it comes to vehicle tracking, Telematics and fleet management, what is the potential for your solutions and how is the acceptance by the end-users?
Sachdev: On an average, seven lakh commercial vehicles are produced in India every year. Also, with an acute shortage of drivers for plying the goods, it becomes a challenge for companies to deliver their goods. This is where Novire comes into the picture. Our solutions help companies analyse the gaps in transportation and also give insights as to how to increase the number of trips per vehicle.
Integrating asset-tracking applications into business systems such as ERP, supply chain management and distribution systems provides critical context into real-world conditions and complete enterprise visibility. Modern M2M platforms provide not only basic enterprise integrations, but also multi-faceted directions, thereby allowing businesses to fully optimise their business processes with real time data information. Our plan is to capture more and more of structured and unstructured data externally as well internally, and raise red flags and alerts in a timely manner in the extended value chain, and propagate it to all the above-mentioned stakeholders such that instead of being active after the problem has occurred, they are more proactive well before time.
How would you compare India with developed markets from a fleet management perspective? Who are the other key stakeholders that have a major role in this process?
Rajan: Some studies estimate that India spends close to 13 per cent of its GDP on logistics. Compared to this, the developed world spends close to 7-8 per cent. In order to reduce this, this sector needs to be more efficient. The only way by which we can do this is if there's a perfect synergy between the corporates and the transportation providers. We are such synergy providers. By providing safety to the drivers and various insights to the corporates, we are ensuring that both the corporates and the transportation providers are on the same page.
What is Novire's medium- to long-term (3-5 year) plan?
Sachdev: We hope to bring a paradigm shift in the consciousness of people and how they view the whole arena of,'Sense and Response'. We, at Novire, are just giving out our best to ensure that this dream becomes a reality by making our roads safer. We've been hiring and setting up offices pan India aggressively. From metro cities, we have now also moved to Tier-II and Tier-III cities. We have also set up our vision for 2020 which is to touch 3 lakh devices.
'Modern M2M platforms provide not only basic enterprise integrations, but also multi-faceted directions, thereby allowing businesses to fully optimise their business processes with real time data information.'