Blue Dart pitches for a strong ground

News Clip :

14th September, 2007.

To Spend Rs 1,000cr to boost ground network in 5-7 years, Mumbai

Logistics company Blue Dart Express, in which DHL has an 81 % stake, is looking to invest Rs 1,000 crore to ramp up its infrastructure to enter the ground network in a major way over the next 5-7 years. The investments, to be made in a phased manner, will be funded through internal accruals. The logistics company, which owns two Boeing 757s and four Boeing 737s, is also looking to add another Boeing 757 aircraft to its fleet by year end as part of the expansion blueprint.

Though Blue Dart started out with air express and acquired core competency in this space, it is expanding into the ground network since, "customers want a single window access for total distribution solutions", Tulsi Mirchandaney, senior vice-president, Blue Dart, told DNA Money.

"We have an integrated ground infrastructure for last mile delivery to 14,600 locations across the country. So ground is a by-product and we have 5.8% market share by default," Mirchandaney said. In the air express segment, Blue Dart has a leading 41.7% share, according to. the company.

Mirchandaney added: "However; now we want to develop the ground network as a separate focus area."

The ground logistics market is worth Rs 1,160 crore, minus the trucking segment, which is highly unorganised while the air express courier market is to pegged at Rs 1,400 crore.

The company, registered a turnover of Rs 670 crore in 2006-07. It is looking at a20% growth in 2007-08.

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