Logistics is the backbone of any growing economy. In India, the sector is valued at $250 billion and is expected to grow at 8% YoY to reach $330 billion by 2025.
The road-based fleet industry, holding over 70% overall share in freight transportation, is a synergy of about 15 million operational commercial vehicles that employ 20 million personnel. The upswing in technological innovations and government policies drive the fleet industry on the road toward digitalization.
Growth and modernization of fleet industry
Fleet businesses experienced significant revenue growth in the past few years for two primary reasons. One, the evolution of fleet management systems that enabled digital solutions like telematics-based route optimizations and the emergence of fleet aggregators. Fleet management systems have radically disrupted the rather traditional fleet industry by integrating modern technologies and services into the value chain. According to recent reports, fleet management systems as an industry is estimated to grow 14% yearly to 6.8 million units in 2025. As the current market penetration is hanging around 10% for the entire commercial vehicle industry, the growth potential is tremendous. The emergence of fleet aggregators has enabled seamless order and demand management and has generated great opportunities to stabilize and monitor productivity leading to sustainable profitability and growth.
And two, the government of India had initiated several digital policies such as FASTag-based toll collection, digital e-way bills, and compulsory installation of GPS devices in commercial vehicles to tap into the day-to-day fleet operations data.
Key operational challenges
In spite of the brisk progression in digital adoption, the fleet industry grapples with operational inefficiencies and ineffectual resource utilization. Not all fleet operators have access to technology that helps them control costs and enhance operational excellence, productivity, and profitability.
In this article, let‘s review the top challenges of fleet businesses and how we can help resolve the pain points.
Truck owner fragmentation
80% of the trucks running in the country are owned by small vendors with a maximum fleet of five or fewer trucks. These small fleet owners are outside the purview of digital tools and analytics. They lack a centralized platform for evaluating trip data to optimize cost and make better decisions to promote overall development and profitability.
The mandates of the Indian government and ongoing digitization efforts have detangled some of the essential knots for the fleet business. However, onboarding and managing the fleet system is still a hassle. For example, FASTag wallet, fuel payments, KYC of drivers, and vehicle registration on the Telematics Platform are arduous tasks involving multiple stakeholders such as Fleet Aggregators, Transporters, Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs), Banks, and National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC).
Further, though the fleet payments ecosystem renders numerous digital payment solutions, they are essentially decentralized. This makes it impossible for the fleet operators to view or manage such payments/expenses under one roof. For instance, payment cards for fuel, toll booth payments via FASTag, and other miscellaneous expenses paid (via diverse modes) ought to be handled individually.
India has the largest road network covering about 98,000 km of National Highways, which is just 2% of the overall road network in the country. But 40% of the total traffic is concentrated on these highways. Nevertheless, the Indian commercial vehicle covers 300 km a day, which is relatively low compared to the global average of 500-800 km a day. A sizeable portion of this journey (~40%) is dead miles, implying trucks travel without load yet have some capital allocated for the return trip. This is done in anticipation of new orders during the return journey; otherwise, they risk missing out on orders due to a longer lead time in getting the capital allocated and the ideal vehicle at the pickup location. Due to the dynamic nature of freight orders, the capital allocated to a vehicle is not in line with the capital required for optimal utility.
Limited access to credit
There is a momentous improvement in the fleet industry due to the private sector participation in fleet aggregation and telematics services and government initiatives. However, lenders don‘t have complete access to payments and cashflows handled by the fleet owners. This results in inefficient credit decisions. For example, lenders have limited or no visibility to real-time reports in terms of daily distance covered, transactions on fuel & FASTag, etc., per vehicle. This leaves lenders with inadequate information on vehicle capital utilization, which in turn results in inefficient credit decisions and low participation in providing working capital for fleet operations.
How can our centralized fleet platform help?
M2P‘s Fleet Drive serves as a centralized fleet payments management platform for the end-to-end business needs of the fleet operators, the telematics sector, and the lenders. Our platform serves as a one-stop solution for all fleet challenges by enabling harmonized payment management across trips and cohesive access to the capital for fleet operations. Our cutting-edge API–driven technology stack ensures seamless integration of the stakeholders such as NETC, OMCs, lenders, telematics, and fleet aggregators, and provides the following benefit to the fleet industry.
Seamless onboarding and integration
M2P’s API-driven Fleet Drive Platform fosters frictionless onboarding of vehicles and drivers. It also enables hassle-free, digital, and secure integration with stakeholders such as OMCs, NETC, fuel retailers, banks providing PPI wallets, and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) of fleet aggregators for trip payments management.
Single wallet to manage all payments
The platform allows fleet owners to manage payments across FASTag, fuel, and ATM expenses throughout the trip. It also empowers the fleet owners to switch unused funds across the driver FASTag and fuel account back to the master wallet, enabling real-time capital allocation.
Real-time control and visibility
Our Fleet Drive Platform has a centralized dashboard that provides comprehensive visibility to all on-trip operations. Fleet owners can track active vehicles, driver location, wallet balance, limit management, and capital allocation across the fleet.
Partnership with major Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs)
The platform facilitates stakeholders with cross-functional opportunities like fuel cashback/rewards with no surcharge on fuel payments across partner OMCs. Our API-driven technology stack supports OMCs in onboarding transporters, integrating with payment wallets, generating statements and reconciliation.
Add value with fintech layer
Fleet Drive Platform provides real-time reports and insights for lenders to make accurate credit decisions. With its end-to-end integration across the fleet payments ecosystem, the platform makes sure the transactions are recorded and verified for each vehicle across the entire fleet. This ensures lenders have complete visibility of the capital utilization by each fleet operator and their vehicles. They are empowered to manage risk effectively based on their Business Rule Engine (BRE) and provide credit. For Fleet Operators, adding a fintech layer to the fleet operations value chain will help in handling cash flow management based on demand and route optimizations and getting credit access from lenders.
360-degree Fleet Payments Management
Despite the numerous advantages of the modern fleet management system, its market penetration in the fleet industry is comparatively low and lacks the finance layer to enable efficacious and secure operations. It is imperative to amalgamate the data generated by telematics & fleet aggregators with the fleet payments in order to render better insights and improve the decision-making ability of the fleet operators and lenders. M2P‘s Fleet Drive Platform employs an API-driven technology stack to seamlessly integrate all the stakeholders to create an efficient 360-degree Fleet Payments Management.
For more information on our Feet Drive Platform, write to us at email@example.com.
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