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Start up of the week | Locus: Driving logistics with data driven algorithms


Start up of the week | Locus: Driving logistics with data driven algorithms


Start up of the week | Locus: Driving logistics with data driven algorithms

Founded in mid 2015 by Geet Garg and Nishith Rastogi, graduates from IIT & BITS Pilani, Locus provides a single platform which optimize logistics operations to provide consistency, efficiency and transparency. Built to fit any business model, their main USP is that their solution works on ground and factors in real world conditions. Supporting 100s of exception scenarios & constraints to provide the best possible solution, the platform is also customizable and scalable.

Having raised seed funds from GrowX Ventures & Manish Singhal in July 2015 and Series A funding of $2.75mn led by Exfinity Venture Partners with participation from Blume Ventures, BeeNext, Rajesh Ranavat, MD, Fung Capital and other existing investors etc, Locus has also been selected into many top notch accolades from being top 3 companies at the Surge Pitch Stage to being selected as a part of Microsoft Accelerator.



That’s not all; Locus has also been recognized internationally by CB Insights among the top technology providers in the Logistics & Supply Chain Space and has also bagged two awards in 2016- TiE Lumis Partners Entrepreneurial Excellence Award & Disruptive Tech of the year.

With such widely acknowledged achievements, Locus takes a smooth sail to be the Startup of the week. Let’s find out some interesting insights about the startup.

Locus’ proprietary data driven algorithms bringing a change in logistics industry

Control over the deliveries and making better decisions are the two main things that Locus’ technology has enabled leaders in this sector. Its’ ground breaking insights into how to improve business efficiency and reduce operational costs has made Locus a favourite of many in this industry. Enterprises are using Locus not just to learn, see or understand, but to make better decisions.

Nishith Rastogi, Co-founder & CEO, Locus

But how all of it is being facilitated? “The amount of information and improvement possible through technology can be overwhelming. Locus is here to make a dent in this sector to help make sense of this information, using deep technology”, said Nishith Rastogi, Founder and CEO, Locus.sh. Holding a Bachelor’s in Electronics and Master’s in Economics, he is a published author in the field of experimental physics and has pending patents in Machine Learning. He is also the winner of TIE Lumis Entrepreneurial Excellence Award, 2016.

“Locus is a state-of-the-art automation platform for logistics that helps in route optimisation and 3D packaging technology solutions. ​ The platform can be used for automatic scheduling, routing, tracking & simulations for last-mile and inter-city movements”, he added.

Working towards an aim to reduce human intervention in decision making at various points in the organization's supply chain, Locus is trying to automate parts of the process. A set of infrastructure services around their proprietary algorithms offer a complete technology stack in the form of Platform as a Service.

Big data and analytics- the backbone for logistics and supply chain sector

“Given the way big data and analytics are impacting supply chain entities around the globe, interest in supply chain analytics has increased among manufacturers and logistics firms”, avers Nishith.

Geet Garg, Founder and CTO, Locus.sh

Though some of its most interesting possibilities are yet to be realized, analytics, if used properly has the potential to model day to day operations and help optimize resource utilization. Thriving onto this Real time operational data, Locus is helping in making decisions and plans based on current reality, rather than just the assumptions by people within the company.

“Predictive analytics capabilities help organizations enhance the efficiency of routes and overall operations without increasing operating costs. This in turn helps produce greater value of services and end customer experience”, said Nishith.

Enterprises who have partnered with Locus are achieving significant results to improve operational performance and gain greater intelligence”, he added.

Use cases

Flaunting various business use-cases, Locus has achieved delivery cost reduction, fleet capacity planning, real-time rider tracking and status updates, business decision making like warehouse location and vehicle fleet sizing, sales beat optimizations and optimal routes for movement of goods from warehouse to retailers, through its technology.

“We have partnered with some of the leading brands in India, and are quite excited with the early results. We have been working with consumer brands, where we solved the problems of moving material from a central warehouse to retailers, while modelling their on-ground constraints on our platform”

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“We have also modeled the Sales Beat Routing for a leading FMCG company, to plan the optimal weekly schedule of routes and outlets to be covered by sales representatives, based on constraints like distance travelled, fairness of overall business potential etc.”

Locus currently delivers it services to an array of clients including Urban Ladder (India's largest online furniture retailer), Quikr (India’s leading Online classifieds portal), Lenskart (India's largest online eyewear retailer), 1mg (India’s largest platform for Healthcare services) and more.

Challenges on the way

Being a startup in this space, one of the major challenges that crosses their way was Geocoding i.e converting human written addresses to coordinates. Given the fact that in India there is no fixed format followed for addresses, the founders had a struggle in finding ways to deal with it.

However overcoming the same, Nishith confesses that “We have now built geocoding solutions that combine different approaches of machine learning and natural language processing. This has enabled us to leverage the millions of address data points available to us and provide optimal geocoding solutions to our clients”.

The growth story continues

Attributing their rapid growth, Locus proudly dedicates their success to its team. “We are a team first company. We spend significant time and effort in hiring the right talent. Today, we have a neurogeneticist, a computational neuroscientist from NCBS- TIFR, a protein- folding expert from CMU and other such highly qualified and experienced individuals”, he said.

And with the team strength growing from 8 to 35 in just a year, there is no stopping for this startup up which is still in a lookout to hire more engineers and data scientists to its team.



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