Since May 31, 2021, Ajay Kumar Bhatt, Managing Director at a. hartrodt India, is back in the New Delhi office – after a lockdown in phases totaling approximately 45 days. In Mumbai, a. hartrodt was allowed to open earlier, while the regional offices in Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkata as well as the sales offices in Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Pune still remain closed. Although India's states have different Corona regulations, Bhatt assures all customers, "a. hartrodt India is operating normally across the country." The freight forwarding services are functioning, even though in the meantime 15 of the 80 employees have contracted Covid-19.
Airports and seaports are in operation
During the slowly receding Corona disaster, India's airports and seaports have been in operation continuously. Bhatt sees "no particular challenges" in this organized logistics sector at present. He reports problems for unorganized small businesses such as truck drivers or customs agents. Because a. hartrodt India serves customers in growth industries such as pharmaceuticals, chemicals and medical technology, Bhatt expects sales to increase by up to 14 percent year-on-year in 2021.
Local customers have global supply chains
"From February to April, we had a very high volume of shipments because backlogs were cleared," Bhatt reports. As a result, the government's Goods and Services Tax revenue also rose to a record high of the equivalent of 16 billion euros in the month of April. In India, a. hartrodt offers end-to-end solutions including sea and air freight, warehousing and trucking. 60 percent are now local customers. "They have worldwide supply chains and use our global approach," says Willem van der Schalk, a. hartrodt's consultant for the subcontinent. "We are able to control the supply chain across Asia-Pacific and worldwide," he points out.
At a. hartrodt India, 35 percent of the staff is working again in the offices, all others continue to operate from their home. Bhatt wants everyone to stay healthy, including customers. And he currently sees a positive effect on their business due to pandemic.