5th August 2022, Chennai: Celcius Logistics, India’s first SaaS-based cold chain marketplace, recently organised a transport partner event in Chennai on the 3 rd and 4 th of August. This was a part of the company’s ‘Vahan Vikas Yojana’ (VVY) Scheme, the first of its kind corporate initiative to help new entrants, including asset owners for transport/warehouse, to enter the cold supply chain sector. The 2-day event was held at Salai Kasimedu Royapuram and saw an enthusiastic response from over 200 participants. The event, the first ever by Celcius in South India, was co- hosted by Sriram Finance, one of the largest NBFCs in the commercial vehicle segment and a nationwide partner for the initiative.

Through the Vahan Vikas Yojana (VVY) Clecius, in association with Shriram Transport Finance Company (STFC), aims to fund vehicles and facilitate working capital financing for the cold supply chain market. Under the collaboration, which marks STFC's entry into the cold supply chain segment, the two partners will provide light and heavy commercial vehicles to entrepreneurs, start-ups, truck owners and drivers, interested to venture into the cold supply chain sector, and will also provide them relevant training, and a minimum income commitment.

Speaking on the initiative and its significance, Mr Swarup Bose, Founder and CEO, Celcius Logistics, said, “With the Vahan Vikas Yojana Scheme, we aim to build a reefer trucks network, as part of our larger mission to build an unbroken cold supply chain in the country. And we realise that this is not possible without empowering the transporters, especially the smaller truck drivers and owners, who form the backbone of our logistics network. Additionally, we aim to also create a new class of transporters who can keep growing while being associated with Celcius. This enables us to plug the gap between demand and supply while encouraging new entrants into the logistics business, which till now was a hurdle for many due to a lack of knowledge of the cold chain and high entry cost. The financial security with minimum income commitment and the training we provide will further allow them more growth opportunities. This was our first event in the south of India and the response in Chennai has been encouraging! We aim to conduct several such meets across the country, in the coming months and look forward to an overwhelming response!”

The conventional cold chain system in India is riddled with issues. The yawning systemic gaps became more pronounced and came to the forefront during the unprecedented nationwide lockdown in March 2020. Considering the sustained demand for contactless deliveries and anticipating the need for a robust and seamless cold chain to aid the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, Mr Swarup Bose co-founded Celcius and brought about a paradigm shift in the industry. Celcius’s HYBRID SaaS-based cold chain marketplace solution connects Shippers, Transporters, and Cold Storage owners across the country and aims to bridge the systemic gaps through tech adoption. In just two years since its inception, the company has grown 20 times and expanded its operations from 5 cities to 350 cities.

Today, with 25+ direct Annual Contracts with companies like Godrej, Vadilal, Sumeru, Suguna etc., 107+ Cold storage, Celcius already has a strong network to ensure ongoing business to its VVY patrons, throughout the year. Additionally, Celcius has also partnered with several leading OEMs like Ashok Leyland, Tata Motors, Eicher etc. on a national level, for an assured and exclusive competitive rate over the MRP, further benefiting the patrons of VVY.

The southern part of India has some of the prominent port cities in the country and is crucial to the shipping and logistics sector, especially the cold supply chain network. Every year, a large amount of food, including frozen foods and fresh produce is wasted due to a lack of efficient reefer vehicles, appropriate cold storage and inconsistencies in the overall cold supply chain network of the country. Building a strong network of reefer transport partners across these parts is vital in the larger vision of creating an unbroken cold supply chain network – the need of the hour for India. In line with this, Celcius aims to hold many more VVY meets across South India, including cities like Coimbatore, Bengaluru, Mangaluru, Vijayawada, Hyderabad, Trivandrum, Vishakhapatnam etc., to integrate and empower key on-ground partners to drive efficiencies and strengthen the network, one city at a time!

About Celcius - The Unbroken Cold Chain

Celcius is the first online marketplace in cold-chain logistics and warehousing in India. Its comprehensive proprietary tech solution includes a SaaS marketplace which offers end-to-end solutions connecting all the stakeholders of the cold- chain ecosystem. Celcius is building a value proposition in the form of "The Unbroken Cold Chain" for all its stakeholders by adopting technology to solve challenges in inefficiency, transparency, and discovery, and provide quality assurance in the cold-chain logistics market while aggregating fragmented demand and supply across regions thus carving out an ultimate niche as "The Unbroken Cold Chain" in its segment.. The Mumbai-based start-up received USD 500,000 in a seed fund round from investors in India, Malaysia, Nigeria, and the US. The brand successfully utilized the funds to scale up its operations and diversify the services on its platform by building on primary, mid-mile and last mile deliveries of perishables like Vaccines, Dairy, Fresh agriculture produce, Pharmaceuticals and other sectors. It recently closed USD 7.5 Mn in bridge funding from marquee investors like Supply Chain Labs, Mumbai Angels, Vcats, Keiretsu, EVAN, Magehold and other key individual investors and key groups.