Blue Dart opens 'superhub' facility in Bangalore

News Clip : Business Standard, Mumbai.

23rd March, 2006.

Blue dart, an air express courier and logistics company, has opened its 42,000 square feet 'superhub' facility in Whitefield near Bangalore to handle goods and service from the region.

Addressing a press conference here today, Malcolm Monteiro, managing director of Blue Dart, said "This is our ninth superhub facility in south India. As part of our onging drive to bring international services to domestic market, we now have a total area of over 6 lakh square feet in India, of which over 2.10 lakh square feet is in south India.

The four states in South India (Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala) represent important, growing markets for Blue Dart. "Bangalore, especially has posted strong growth in the package segment. We handled about 42,000 tonnes from the South during the calendar 2005, almost equivalent to the total exports and imports out of Bangalore airport," he added.

The southern region accounts for 42,000 tonnes of cargo. The company has handled 18,000 shipment, which forms the 35 per cent of its revenues. The share of Bangalore city constitutes 12 to 15 per cent of this 35 per cent.

Speaking on the plans for the year, Monteiro said the company had plan to invest Rs 25 crore to set up 45 facilities in addition to the existing 217 facilities in India in the present calendar year aimed at creating 121,645 square feet facility.

The company has clocked revenues of Rs 536 crore in the January - December 2005 period, a 24 per cent growth. The present financial year's numbers are expected to be " pretty much the same", he said.

Organised air express, courier business in India is valued at Rs 1,100 crore. Of this, Blue Dart's share is around 40 per cent. The following are other players with market share: First Flight 18 per cent, DTDC 10 per cent, Overnite 9 per cent and other small players 24 per cent.

The company has its own integrated air and surface infrastructure. It has deployed five Boeing 737 freighters (two company owned and three on lease). " we already have an aircraft based at Bangalore, with seven route connections each nights," he said adding that the company, each night, handles 166 tonnes capacity having 39 routes.

The company is close to acquiring another aircraft (Boeing 757-200) having a payload of 28 to 30 tonnes for air support in India. For this new addition, it is looking at options on whether to acquire a Boeing freighter or take it on lease, Monteiro.

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