Best CFO Awards 2016-17 | Waving Blues Away
News Clip: www.businessworld.in
12th March, 2017
When the financial crisis of 2008 hit the industry, Yogesh Dhingra focused on e-tailing, ensuring Blue Dart remained profitable
Yogesh Dhingra has been a Blue Darter since 1992, with an overall experience of over 35 years across diverse industries. Prior to taking on his present role of chief operating officer and chief financial officer, he held the position of finance director at Blue Dart.
In 2008, while the world was experiencing the horrors of a financial crisis, Dhingra gave an unprecedented impetus and traction to the company’s aggressive growth plans by announcing 25 new products/initiatives as it celebrated its silver anniversary.
The year 2008-2009 was the most challenging phase for Blue Dart. Well before the government and the industry got the wake-up call, Dhingra had read the writing on the wall and had informed all key stakeholders of the company about what was going to hit it. One of the best decisions taken under Dhingra’s leadearship was to foray into ground express that resulted in a market share growth for the company from 8.5 per cent in 2009 to 13.5 per cent in 2016.
Blue Dart set its focus on the e-tailing industry in 2009-10. And today, it is the market leader service provider for last-mile delivery for the industry in India. “Our superior solutions have differentiated our service to e-tailers and their customers. Cash-on-Delivery (COD), OTM (on the move) hand held devices, MPOS (Mobile Point of Sale), mobile service centres, smart truck, etc., are all innovations for this industry,” says Dhingra.
“The e-tail business for Blue Dart is significantly important as it is the largest contributor in revenue terms. We have innovated for the industry in terms of deploying automation in the first mile/fulfilment/last mile and reverse logistics. Our parcel lockers (the first in the country) and mobile service centres ease the delivery process for end-consumers. The various payment options of cash or card (debit/credit) on delivery, integration with mobile wallets, etc. are all super convenient for e-tailing customers,” he adds.
Due to the innovative/consultative and responsiveness track that it has taken for the e-tailing industry, Blue Dart’s growth for this segment is nearly 4-5 times compared to rivals. The segment contributes close to 23 per cent of Blue Dart’s revenue, making it by far the most dominant leader in express solutions for the segment. This is reflected in the 100 per cent CAGR from 2010-2015.
“I follow a very simple thumb rule — starting a month/quarter/year by assuming it will be the most difficult one. This enables better planning and ensuring prudent measures. It’s not what you do, but your planning strategy that makes you a winner. With inflation rising, there is no denying that cost pressures have been increasing,” he adds.
He had the clear vision to grow the ground express segment through organic routes in spite of contrary views of all the key stakeholders. He is a leader who believes in the value technology can bring to the organisation, especially in the fast-paced ‘express’ sphere. He drives the development of the operations ERP, enabling a robust track and trace architecture.
In the midst of the economic slowdown, Dhingra, as a prudent leader, led various cost-optimisation and rationalisation initiatives to ensure Blue Dart remains a profitable organisation in the short run, while making sure the long-term business plans stay on course.