This Startup is Redefining the Indian Logistics Industry
A Bengaluru-based startup set up in 2017 under the name of Pi Beam Electric, now known as Fyn is re-imagining the Indian logistics and transportation experience with its range of green, affordable, stylish, easy-to-use EV solutions in both personal and commercial spheres. The company offers end-to-end micro-mobility, sustainable EV solutions with data-driven analytics, to augment productivity, particularly in last-mile logistics and transportation. Founded by Visakh Sasikumar at IIT Madras the start-up has pivoted to building India’s leading EV ecosystem platform with in-depth EV expertise in 2021, gained by selling more than 1,000 EVs in the B2B market. During an interaction with Nitisha; Visakh Sasikumar, CEO & Co-founder, Fyn Mobility highlights the need of charging stations. He also elaborates on his work toward its first vehicle-agnostic charging station which may get ready in the coming months.
Kindly talk about Fyn Mobility and its special offerings.
Fyn Mobility is an IIT Madras startup working to Rede-fyn the Indian logistics industry with the help of Smart fleets and our own EV-as-a-service ecosystem platform that will bring all stakeholders of the EV ecosystem together to help understand and solve for Demand and Supply in the Last-mile and Mid-mile logistics sector.
Fyn provides EV smart fleets with drivers to large and medium delivery businesses who are looking to switch to EV fleets.
Fyn (formerly called Pi Beam Electric) is India’s first vertically integrated EV-as-a-Service platform for last-mile logistics and commute applications. Fyn offers end-to-end micro-mobility through sustainable EV solutions along with data-driven insights, to augment productivity in last-mile logistics and transportation space. Our smart, green, and affordable EVs fleets are revolutionizing transport and customer deliveries in e-commerce, retail, and small and medium businesses and large corporate and tech parks.
The Fyn EV ecosystem platform connects our end customer, financiers and the operations teams on a single platform to help understand and meet the demand. With the help of the platform we are able to give our clients complete visibility on the deployments, helping them make critical business decisions and plan for the future deployments.
Kindly share your journey and aim to start Fyn Mobility.
We started out in 2017 under the name of Pi Beam Electric as an EV OEM and while building EVs for India we noticed that the EV-as-a-service industry was broken. There was a lack of understanding of EVs that led to multiple EV fires and accidents. The logistics industry was still very traditional in its approach with no processes in place or trackability of the fleets and hence giving clients no clarity on their fleets.
We had the solutions as we came from EV Manufacturing & Data background. The year 2021 was a gradual progression from Pi Beam Electric (EV Manufacturers) to Fyn Mobility (EV as a service) to step into the Logistics industry with the growing need for deliveries as most of the world came to a halt. With this move we started working on a platform that would give all stakeholders clarity in the process of EV deployments.
We have now successfully stepped into India’s Last-mile logistics & provide EV fleets to businesses that need last-mile connectivity for logistics & commute. We are working towards rede-fyn-ing the logistics industry with the help of our EV know-how, IoT & Technology.
Founded by Visakh Sasikumar at IIT Madras in 2013, the start-up has pivoted to building India’s leading EV ecosystem platform with in-depth EV expertise in 2021, gained by selling more than 1,000 EVs in the B2B market.
What are the major challenges and opportunities in the EV industry?
- As India gears up for its 30% electric goals set by the Indian government for 2030, major Businesses have already started moving to converting their fleets electric. This is where Fyn comes in.
- With the Goals of a green India we have seen a surge in the demand for Smart electric fleets with drivers and continue to fulfill them for our existing as well as new clients.
- With Smart fleets coming in there is a need for proper infrastructure to support these fleets and Fyn along with its partner startups is also working together to bring sustainable solutions for the same.
- With the growing demand there is a need for innovation in the EV sector to help make the overall ecosystem a sustainable one. With the help of our platform we are able to define bottlenecks in the system and work towards finding a long term solution. The growth of the EV industry in India is also creating opportunities for companies involved in manufacturing EV components such as motors, controllers, and inverters.
- This brings in trust for the new businesses looking to make the shift and also helps spread awareness to the consumers, in turn making EVs more approachable for all.
- Currently with the high demand of fleets in all sectors we have faced issues with the Supply chain management
- Apart from Supply there is a huge gap in finding right drivers as well, drivers currently are in high demand which leads to lack of reliability on existing delivery partners
- Another challenge for fleet owners is that of vandalism and theft. We work towards reducing this number and have seen some strategies working better than others and continue to reduce this number
- Overall India also needs to focus on building the right Infrastructure for the EVs charging and Parking to be able to help Fleet owners cater to the growing demand for EV fleets
- Availability of batteries and parts for the manufacturing of EVs is also a challenge as most EV manufacturers slowly try to shift towards made in India options but they are currently limited and busy fulfilling existing demands
Kindly share budget expectations for the EV industry.
- The Fame policies are already helping out the startups working in the EV sector with multiple benefits such as subsidies and policies being set for EV ecosystem players
- An extension of these subsidies will further help catalyze the growth of the EV ecosystem and its serving counterparts
- We would like to see some new policies for building the EV infrastructure as that is the backbone of the whole EV ecosystem
- As the entire EV ecosystem for logistics depends on gig workers and this industry is seeing multifold growth, it is really critical to have the following policies for gig workers in the upcoming budget.
- Companies providing livelihoods to gig workers should have a lesser tax component while providing services through them. This will in turn ensure the sustainability of these businesses.
- Soft loans for gig workers(educational and housing loans) depending on the min tenure they work for a particular company.
- Budget should have a component to upskill the gig workers
How does Fyn Mobility differentiate itself from other EV companies?
When we gradually moved our business to the logistics industry, we realized that even the businesses who were adopting EV fleets were facing problems with the EV-as-a-Service ecosystem as this was very new to India.
Safety & trust was a big concern with the recent EV fires. The EV fleets and their deployments were also not timely and scalable as there was a lack of funds and supply issues. Another factor that contributed to this list was the driver churn along with a lot of interdependencies within the system before the fleets were deployed to the clients. Above all, there seemed to be no clarity in these deployments due to lack of data and no clear timelines.
We built our company not only to solve for these issues at hand, but also to create a sustainable EV-ecosystem with the help of our EV know-how, Data and Technology:
We are building a vertically integrated EV Platform connecting stakeholders to make EV deployments frictionless.
We are able to bring quality EV Fleets to the roads with our EV know-how & an internal R&D team that helps in intensive testing of these vehicles before they hit the roads. We are a data driven team and hence bring out smart fleets that are trackable and have automated cross-utilization to maximize the use of each vehicle. With these fleets Fyn Mobility is able to empower their clients with a dashboard that helps them manage, track and plan the deployments of new fleets into their businesses.
According to you, what steps should be taken by the Indian Government to revolutionize the EV industry?
As the EV ecosystem prepares itself for the future being electric, we are yet to see speed in the manufacturing & infrastructural setup. A few steps that the government can take to help speed up this are:
- Increase investment in charging infrastructure: The government should invest in the development and expansion of charging infrastructure to support the growth of the EV industry.
- Provide financial incentives: By providing financial incentives to manufacturers, suppliers, and consumers the government can promote the adoption of EVs. in India
- Encourage local production: Encourage local production of EVs and EV components in India to reduce dependency on imports and promote the growth of the domestic industry.
- Promote R&D: Government should invest in research and development to improve the performance and affordability of EVs and to develop new technologies.
- Encourage private sector participation: The government should encourage private sector participation in the development and expansion of the EV industry to leverage the expertise and resources of the private sector.
- Developing battery storage and recycling policies: The government should develop policies and infrastructure to support the battery storage, management, and recycling as batteries are the major component in EVs and their disposal is a major challenge for the industry.
Kindly throw some light on battery swapping policy and how it can help EV users?
While battery swapping is a good alternative till India solves for its Charging infra, it is not sustainable for the long run as it involves a heavy cost to setup and a huge demand for batteries. We believe that for the long run we will need vehicles with fast charging technologies that will not only help reduce each EVs down time but also lead to fewer EVs populating the Indian roads.
Kindly talk about your upcoming products and its special features.
The current logistics industry is very traditional and also has a lot of interdependencies among vendors leading to no transparency in the overall process. We have understood this, and are bringing in a vertically integrated approach through smart EV fleets that are supported by our tech dashboard, providing all stakeholders with the visibility to track each step of the deployment process.
Fyn is also addressing the problem of last-mile emissions using IoT, data tracking, and optimizing on cross-utilisation of its EV fleets to reduce idle time. We are able to give clarity to our clients, similar to what courier tracking services do but for the delivery of EV fleets. With such clarity in place, our clients are able to maximize the utility of these EV fleets leading to higher revenues. We are always building or innovating at Fyn Mobility. Currently our team is working towards building India’s first Fuel Cell 3 wheeler. We are also under the prototyping stages of our in-house EV for logistics which is set to redefine the B2B 2-wheeler category in the logistics sector.
While EVs are the future of Indian logistics, charging stations are its backbone. With the growing fleets we need more charging stations and hence are working towards our first vehicle agnostic charging station which should be ready in the coming months.
How was the year 2022 in terms of business and what will be your future marketing strategies?
2022 for Fyn was focused on setting up the foundation of our services from bringing in the clients to understanding their specific needs and bottlenecks and resolving for the same with the help of our tech platform. We focused on growing our fleets and enabling them with IoT devices to start tracking data.
2023 is the year for us to scale with the help of insights and learning’s from 2022. We will also be focusing on bringing in new strategic partnerships that will accelerate adoption of innovative solutions such as fast charging fleets for a sustainable future.