The Business Year

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Regional and global logistics players continue to flock to Dubai to take advantage of the Emirate's reputation as a leading international logistics hub.

Madhav Kurup

CEO, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics

Logistics cannot be generalized, which is why we have created specializations. We are currently witnessing huge growth in the healthcare, automotive, and chemical industries, as well as the fashion industry. The majority of clothes are manufactured in South Asia, as all the major brands have factories in the region. However, the current model these brands are using is ineffective as products are transported from Asia to the US, and then back to Asia. At present, we are assisting companies by using the B2C model with e-commerce. We are currently implementing this model in Sri Lanka and have high hopes for its implementation in Dubai. The challenges we face encourage us to innovate and engage in joint ventures, such as our recent partnership with Hellmann Indu Chemical Facility, which consists of a combined space of around 20,000sqm. In addition, our recent Gateway Sea project has successfully facilitated global production lines which use Dubai as a gateway to the Middle East and South Asia. Technological advancements have allowed us to implement an environment-friendly cooling system in the Middle East. Personally, I see blockchain playing a major role in our industry. There is currently a lack of transparency that cuts across various sectors within our industry and this is an issue that blockchain can solve. Big data is also important and the way it is used will change and undoubtedly lead to fundamental changes.

Dani El Zein

COO & General Manager, Quiqup

Quiqup started in London in 2014 as a concierge service. The original version was an app where you could place an order for whatever you needed, and then a driver would complete your errand. We catered to post codes in west London and realized over time that people were mostly using the app for food. We decided to enhance our app with a marketplace for all kinds of retailers, with a section of our app focused on food. In order to maintain the quality of service, we developed a dispatching system that manages the movement of couriers in an efficient way. We built a machine learning engine that analyzed a variety of factors to understand how long certain trips are going to take. This started off with simple algorithms that gave us around 60% accuracy. We then built our data science capability and introduced machine learning and AI, which boosted our accuracy to 92%. Our aim is to keep our couriers fully utilized while maintaining a best-in-class service. We can use our technology to solve much bigger problems; this is when we decided to launch in Dubai with the new business model serving restaurant and retail businesses. We started off with a small fleet and have grown it 25 times ever since. We try to absorb as much volume as possible from all kinds of retailers, restaurants, and grocers, giving all partners access to our sophisticated delivery fleet.

Abhishek Ajay Shah

Co-Founder & Group CEO, Abhishek Ajay Shah

Looking at Dubai’s geographic positioning, we are well connected to important emerging markets such as India and Africa by both sea and air. Furthermore, China’s One Belt One Road initiative will have a major impact here, and the UAE is working to ensure its relevance in China’s initiative. We will see China rival the US as a major global power, and we can position Dubai as the intermediary, especially from a technology standpoint. In 2018, we made an investment in a UK-based company that will make us a completely digital company in terms of how customers interact with us, book and track products, do returns, perform analytics, and so forth. In a year, we hope to become the first digital forwarder in the region. We are focusing on providing access to emerging markets. For example, we do a lot of e-commerce logistics in Nigeria and Kenya from Dubai. This is Dubai’s opportunity as we are well connected to these markets. Emerging markets prefer us rather than relying on shipping from China, Germany, or the US. In our business, wherever there is inefficiency and challenge, there is opportunity. RSA Global cannot compete in Germany because a transporter’s net margin in Germany is between 0.2% to 0.4%. This allows no added value without massive increments in technology adoption. Ultimately, it is best for us to enter emerging markets with creative solutions.



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