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Rajesh Yabaji, Chanakya Hridaya, 

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WHILE WORKING with ITC in the company’s supply chain division, Blackbuck co-founders Rajesh Yabaji and Chanakya Hridaya figured that getting hold of truckers was a major challenge. They decided to digitise the ecosystem, keeping truck owners at the centre. “We built a marketplace where shippers (enterprises and small businesses) and truck owners can connect with each other as per their requirement,”
says co-founder and chief security officer Hridaya.
The duo diversified beyond enterprise freight to reach out to villages where truckers struggled to manage their businesses. The idea was to create an end-to-end digital platform for truck owners. “One of the biggest challenges was creating trust and appetite for digital products. We built a distribution network to build awareness, persuade truckers, and hand-hold them that there is a more efficient way to conduct business,” says Hridaya.
Less than 20% of truck operators owned a smartphone when they started out. The inflection point came in 2019 after the government mandated FASTags for toll payments. “99% of the growth in business happened after 2019,” says co-founder and CEO Yabaji. Truck owners registered with BlackBuck increased 52% from 900,000 in FY21 to 1,370,000 in FY22. The company had 33% share of the truck market in FY22, against 25% in FY21.
Apart from the marketplace, Blackbuck built an ecosystem to help truck owners with toll and fuel payments. It also ventured into telematics to help them in surveillance. “We provide GPS devices to truck owners to track the movement of trucks from wherever they are. There is a system that allows fleet owners to remotely switch off engines in case of theft,” says Yabaji.
The company’s payments business grew 100% year-on-year in FY22, while telematics and marketplace segments grew 150-200%. The number of employees has increased to 8,000.
The next goal is to steer the company towards profitability. “We are closer to being profitable since we reduced our losses by 80% last year,” says Yabaji.