BlackBuck startup story now a case study at the Harvard Business School

By:Manmeet Kaur Tura 2018-11-22

The 30-year old founder of BlackBuck, the online logistics marketplace has achieved massive name, fame and success over the years. Rajesh Yabaji is now a renowned entrepreneur across the globe from being the topic of a case study by the Harvard Business School to a fresh funding in October. 

BlackBuck’s prolific journey has become a success story that provides hope to many Indian startup scenes.

In a short span of just three years, BlackBuck has taken a great leap and is now working with over 250,000 trucks all over India. This innovative venture aims brings the cutting-edge technology to a traditionally low-tech sector. One major reason of the success is Yabaji’s closeness to his work; he modestly calls this low- tech sector as a “dhool-mitti” (grassroots) industry.

India’s logistics market shall reach about $215 Bn in 2020 led by the ever-expanding Indian economy and especially the mushrooming ecommerce industry.

Despite the rising demand of logistic services, according to a report due to the inefficient transportation system, poor storage conditions and infrastructure, slow rate of technology adoption and shortage of logistic professionals the logistics sector in India shall grow at a very slow pace.

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Beyond these restraints the BlackBuck continues to grow. The Bengaluru based startup has become a case study that is presently being taught at the Harvard Business School to the students in the August 2018 semester. It is also know that eventually it will be made available for teaching purposes within and outside Harvard.

Sharing his journey Yabaji in an interview to the Inc42 states that, “It’s a big vote of confidence and tremendously overwhelming to know that the BlackBuck story will be taught to some of the brightest business students in the world at Harvard. It’s quite dreamlike that Harvard is studying a company I helped build.”

He further added, “It speaks about the potential of the tech startup industry in India.  An Indian startup that began just 3 years back and focuses on a “dhool-mitthi” (grassroots) industry like trucking logistics is the subject of such a study.

Yabaji shares that the logistics team works with around 1,300+ BlackBuckers that are committed to economy-building at a grassroots level. 

The BlackBuck began with connecting shippers and fleet operators and expanded to multiple lines of business to serve different stakeholders in the ecosystem. In addition to 1000+ locations, BlackBuck’s network reaches and impacts 2000+ villages in India.

BlackBuck moves a wide variety of goods allover India, including agri goods (like rice and wheat), coal, oil, metals, chemicals, and FMCG products.

The modest system works with 10,000+ shippers and 250,000+ trucks and use complicated machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms to trace goods logistics data across India.

BlackBuck also launched the first-of-its-kind digital transportation suite to help shippers manage the end-to-end transportation through a click.

According to Rajesh, “Logistics will play a major role in not just the Indian startup network, but in the overall Indian economy. India’s logistics sector is at present growing at 15% and trucking is an important constituent of this.”

India has +7 Mn running trucks, +2 Mn fleet owners, +100,000 brokers and +20,000 transporters. 

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