Traditionally ranked among one of the overlooked sectors in logistics, warehouses today have developed into sophisticated stockrooms with advanced state-of-the-art facilities like real-time tracking mechanisms in India. Based on the kind of infrastructure, the warehousing market in India can be segmented into the following strata; lower stratum – mainly go downs of the past, mostly reinforced cement concrete (RCC) structures whose only utility is storage, middle stratum – warehouses having pre-engineered building (PEB) structures and higher stratum – massive warehouses which are used for storage and have been modernized to perform a lot of supply chain functions.
Various initiatives taken by the Indian government have been driving the country’s warehousing market towards growth, but investors had started taking cognizance of the sector much before the implementation of these reforms like granting infrastructure status to the logistics industry including warehousing. The warehousing market in India accounts for approximately 25% of the total logistics cost.
The warehousing market in India was valued at INR 1501.27 Bn in 2019 and is expected to reach INR 2821.10 Bn by 2024, expanding at a CAGR of ~13.57% during the 2020-2024 period. The warehousing market is sub divided into four industrial segments namely industrial or retail warehousing, container freight station or inland container depot (CFS/ICD), agricultural warehousing and cold storage. Among these segments, agricultural warehousing is expected to witness the highest growth rate of ~17.87% in terms of revenue, during the 2019-2024 forecast period. The agricultural warehousing market was valued at INR 145.82 Bn in 2019 and is expected to reach INR 365.75 Bn by the end of 2024. As of 2019, India has a total agri warehousing capacity of around 91 Mn metric tonnes with majority of the capacity being owned by state agencies. Growing need of proper storage of fruits and vegetables in the country is fuelling the demand of agri-warehousing in the country.
Currently, India’s total warehousing capacity is estimated to be 160 Mn tonnes. Around 30% of this capacity is managed by the private sector, and the rest is divided between FCI (Food Corporation of India), CWC (Central Warehousing Corporation), SWC (State Warehousing Corporation), state agencies and the co-operative sector.
Warehousing clusters across major Indian cities
Around 60% of the modern warehousing capacity in India is concentrated in the top six cities of Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, and National Capital Region (NCR). Warehousing spaces of organized players across eight major cities in India experienced a year-on-year growth rate of ~77% in 2017 to reach 46.2 Mn square feet in 2018. 3PL, e-Commerce, Fast Moving Consumer Durable (FMCD), Fast Moving Consumer Good (FMCG), Manufacturing and Retail industries are the major adopters of organized warehousing spaces in the country. Among these the 3PL and e-Commerce players continued to be the biggest adopters of organized warehousing spaces in 2018. The growth in the Indian e-Commerce industry is fuelling the demand as well as the development of the logistics and warehousing sector of the country. E-retailers are now more aggressively looking forward to opening up warehouses in tier I and tier II cities as well as collaborating with well-known logistics service providers across the country to be able to maintain a minimal delivery cost.
In Kolkata, the annual transaction volumes of warehousing space reached 4.7 Mn square feet in 2018 from 1.6 Mn square feet in 2017, experiencing a massive 191% year-on-year growth in total leasing. Dankuni and suburbs, National Highway-16, Taratala-Maheshtala, and Madhyamgram-Barasat are the four major warehousing clusters in Kolkata. Requirement of warehousing space by 3PL players and the e-commerce sector led to the increase in demand for warehousing space in the city in 2018. Flipkart, Amazon, Delhivery, Diamond Beverages Pvt. Ltd., Stellar and Phillips occupy a major portion of the total warehousing space available in the city.
Key Influencers of the market
The warehousing and logistics sector in India is projected to attract an investment amount of nearly INR 691 Bn over the next 4-5 years, after the implementation of the Goods & Services Act and the attainment of its infrastructure status. The warehousing sector in the country has witnessed extensive participation from developers, as well as institutional investors, who have invested more than INR 470 Bn since 2014 till May 2019, with an average investment of INR 19 Bn per deal
The growth in the warehousing market in India is also largely being driven by the rise in international business. Entry of numerous foreign as well as domestic industries in the country and establishment of manufacturing plants have generated greater export opportunities, which in turn has fuelled the demand for warehousing spaces across the country. However, Lack of infrastructure is one of the biggest hurdles in the warehousing market in India. India has the lowest warehouse capacity with modern facilities when compared to the rest of the world Additionally, poor road conditions, bad connectivity, inability to handle high traffic density and insufficient air and sea port capacities contribute to the increased cost per transaction in the country’s logistics sector
The Indian warehousing industry is highly fragmented with several unorganized players operating in the market. Organized players in the industry account for only 10% of the total market, whereas around 90% of the warehousing space in the country is controlled by unorganized players who manage small-sized warehouses with less/no mechanization. Major players operating in the warehousing market in India are Container Corporation of India Ltd., Gati Ltd., Mahindra Logistics Ltd., Transport Corporation of India Ltd., DHL Express (India) Pvt. Ltd., Spear Logistics Pvt. Ltd. and Jayem Warehousing Pvt. Ltd., among others.
• Container Corporation of India Ltd.
• Gati Ltd.
• Mahindra Logistics Ltd.
• Transport Corporation of India Ltd.
• Central Warehousing Corporation
• DHL Express (India) Pvt. Ltd.
• Jayem Warehousing Pvt. Ltd
• IndoSpace Development Management Pvt. Ltd.
• Shalimar Warehousing Corporation
• Spear Logistics Pvt. Ltd.