C&B Electronics: Delivering Real Time Visibility in Yard Operations
Date: Sunday , November 23, 2014
Internet of Things (IOT) had been the big buzzword around the world since the start of 21st century. Recent study says that IOT has a market size in trillion-dollar figure. India is catching up with the world and cannot be left behind for long. When Rajesh Kumar and Nitin Sirohi started their entrepreneurial journey in 2006, they were doing specialized services using RFID technology. Soon, they were fascinated with IOT. It was then in 2009 that the two partners closed their previous venture and started C&B Electronics Pvt. Ltd. focusing on a product for container yards.The solution they innovated was new to the industry and they were successful in creating a market around it. It was impossible to think of such a solution which can solve the problem of locating containers precisely in the yard of 50-100 acres of land. \"We created a system where each container inside the yard keeps interacting with the cranes that are used to move these containers. With recording crane-container interaction, we provided so valuable data that it solved a major portion of their difficulties in this area,\" Rajesh recounts.
C&B Electronics started with just providing location of containers but over a period of time, theyhave been doingthe complete yard planning based on the real time data boosting their productivity and deliver guaranteed services to their customers. \"We are one of its kind companies across the globe; this problem is nowhere solved worldwide. Everywhere people have manual intervention for recording these data, and we do it fully automatic whilstinching towards delivering a pedestrian free yard,\" explains Nitin.
Today, C&B Electronics is dedicated to delivering high-quality, smart and secure products to the customers worldwide. The company provides end-to-end solution to the customers and takes best of the breed components from across the world. \"We are a hardware-software company with a complete innovative solution. The main innovation is to understand the right set of different technologies like RFID, GPS, GPRS, different sensors and processing unit that are deployed in harshest of the conditions to capture the data in real-time, automatically,\" adds Nitin. He also elaborates about the company\'s yard management and planning products - HAWK S and HAWK E which have different versions of it suitable to different kind of expectations from the customer. C&B Electronics have more than 90 percent market share in India with less than 10 percent to competitors. C&B has brought more than 25 yards in India under their solution and automated their yard operations to boost efficiency.
Hawk\'s standard version suits small to medium size yards looking for a reliable solution to manage yard operations and includes container location in real time on Kiosk, Web app, phone and tablets, real time trailer congestion in the yard and information about long standing containers\' locations among others.
Sailing Against the Wind
Rajesh faced different challenges that came along hisway since he and Nitin were creating something very new for the industry. One of the main challenges among all was to stabilize the hardware in an adverse condition and keep it working 24x7 as operations. The team was successful in overcoming this by introducing military grade components and installing the devices at right place. Also, the market itself was not very positive about the success of such ambitious project and there had to be some change in processes and discipline, which people were very reluctant of. But once that succeeded, it took the team around 2 years to complete and stabilize. \"We thank Ameya Logistics who gave us a chance and patience to stabilize this solution,\" says Rajesh. With time, the need of cost effective and productivity enhanced solutions have increased. Hence, the company tries to integrate more different kind of sensors in the system to capture other activities. \"We are in a constant mode of R&D. We keep learning the processes and demands from new customer and incorporate those in our solution,\" he adds.
The Motivation Mantra
Rajesh and Nitin believe one of the most attractive things about C&B Electronics is its uniqueness for the employee, and real time information and visibility on different processes inside the yard for the customers. \"The feeling of being the best and self-sustaining without any external funding in itself is a big motivating factor,\" says Nitin. With success on its way, the company aims to hold a strategic position in the value chain. \"These container yards are next link after port for any country\'s logistics. It lies between port and warehousing. We aim to automate this complete chain to make it most efficient. We will soon launch our next product HAWK U,\" concludes Rajesh.
Bangalore (Headquarters), Mumbai, Chennai, NCR region, Mundra, Kolkata (Support offices)
Key Management Rajesh Kumar, Co-Founder & Director
A recognized expert in RFID services and solutions, Rajesh is responsible for organization\'s channels, alliance initiatives and others.
NitinSirohi, Co-Founder & Director
Nitin is responsible for product development and new technology initiatives at C&B.
1. HAWK S
2. HAWK E
1. International - APM Terminals and CMA-CGM
2. India - Ameya, Apollo, Transworld, Hind Terminal, ICD Loni, Gateway Group (Gateway Distripark and Gateway Rail)
3. Government - BalmerLawrie and Co. Ltd.
Currently \"Make in India\' phrase is used as best alternative to bring India to the next league. The industry that will be benefitted the most from this movement will be the logistic industry and majorly shipping. The containerization of EXIM cargos in India is around 50 percent against developed nation at more than 70 percent hence India need to rise and will rise in coming times. Last year India handled more than 10 million containers, which is rising with around 10 percent CAGR.
Container yards in India, earlier, were very reluctant to adopt technologies but the trend is changing since last few years. There are two major reasons for the change; first, the increasing volume, which makes it inevitable for any yard to use some technology to manage the growth; second, the availability of suitable and game changing technology, which people can now look up to. This is a high time and those who do not adopt technology will remain small and soon will see the drop in their business and will be left far behind in coming years.