Intra-city logistics startup Blowhorn has raised $3.65 million (Rs 25 crores) in series A funding from IDG Ventures India, together with the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and existing investors, Draper Associates and Unitus Seed Fund. The company plans to utilize the investment to expand operations to 8 cities in the next 24 months, with over 25,000 daily active drivers.
Blowhorn’s tech-enabled platform connects customers to mini-truck owners, enabling intra-city, sub 2-ton deliveries in a hassle-free, reliable and transparent manner. Founded by Mithun Srivatsa and Nikhil Shivaprasad, who have a deep expertise of over two decades in logistics and technology, Blowhorn is effectively aggregating and streamlining India’s fragmented logistics market that currently has over 1.8 mn mini-trucks in urban centers alone.
For Tim Draper’s new fund ‘Draper Associates’, Blowhorn is the first Series A bet in India. Commenting on the company’s fund raise and growth, Mithun Srivatsa, Co-Founder and CEO, Blowhorn, said, “We have been able to leverage technology and operational innovation to emerge as a market leader by ensuring high business profitability and customer satisfaction. We will now focus on leading the segment across all performance metrics, and are fortunate to have investors who share our vision.”
The company’s superior technology improves drivers’ capacity utilization by connecting them to customers (through website and mobile app), enables real time/spot management, reduces fuel costs and time significantly – leading to high customer satisfaction and successfully doubling drivers’ incomes. Blowhorn also has a unique comprehensive driver-training program, wherein all drivers are trained in customer service.
Founded in 2014, Blowhorn started with 2 employees and has now scaled to 50 full-time employees. Its innovative campaigns such as 1-hour delivery of mobile phones in partnership with OnePlus and #UberIceCream deliveries with Uber, have enabled Blowhorn to work with several cutting-edge companies across India. In less than 2 years, Blowhorn has expanded to provide services across Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad.
“There have been many attempts at solving India’s intra-city logistics challenge—Blowhorn’s extensive use of technology and business level innovation has helped build a strong, rapidly-growing business with industry leading margins in a highly capital efficient manner. Blowhorn has the potential to be a dominant solutions provider of last mile logistics for SMEs and rapidly growing businesses.” Said Karthik Prabhakar, Director, IDG Ventures India Advisors.
Commenting on their participating in this financing round, Rahil Rangwala, Director, Family Economic Stability at the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, said, “One of India’s major challenges is to provide market-relevant skills and meaningful jobs to its large, young and growing workforce. Our investment in Blowhorn gives us an opportunity to improve the income of intra-city truck drivers, who are mostly youth. We are excited to support Blowhorn’s effort in making informal sector jobs more attractive for India’s underprivileged youth, which also fulfills the goals of the government’s Skill India initiative.”