As people across the country continue to shop online, companies like Amazon are strengthening all parts of their network, including their middle mile operations, which connects the fulfillment network with the delivery network. This has opened avenues for small businesses to leverage their on-ground knowledge and power the company’s ability to increase the speed of transportation between the two miles while serving as a median to connect India. Tapping into this opportunity, many entrepreneurs have been able to build and scale their business with Amazon. Leh-based third-party trucking service provider and Managing Partner of ETN Services, Khurshid Ahmed Bhatt is one among them.
It was Khurshid’s dream to bring e-commerce accessibility to every doorstep in the gorgeous town of Leh, a region at an elevation of close to 11,500 feet. Leh is surrounded on all sides by the massive Himalayan mountain range. The journey from Manali to Leh though mesmerizing, is also regarded as one of the most challenging roads in the world with treacherous curves, narrow roads, and hair-pin bends.
To realize the dream of enabling fast e-commerce deliveries in Leh, Khurshid joined Amazon India as a third-party service provider to help transport packages from Manesar to Leh, via the 'Atal Tunnel' in 2020. The sheer willpower shown by him coupled with opening of “Atal Tunnel” has led to having seamless deliveries in the region.
Collaboration with Amazon
Khurshid started his business with just 6 trucks. However, with perseverance and determination, he grew his fleet to over 100 trucks in just over 2 years. Today, he provides employment opportunities to over 250 people, who come from different sections of society and are sole breadwinners of their family. Khurshid serves as a key trucking service provider and changemaker, playing a pivotal role in ensuring timely deliveries in the lap of Himalayas and creating livelihood opportunities for locals.
It has been an enriching experience so far working with Amazon India.
Speaking about his collaboration with Amazon, Khurshid said: "It has been an enriching experience so far working with Amazon India. As a result of their support, we have seen a rapid rise in our business, as we upskill and learn along the way. In the process, we were trained on Amazon’s policies, safe deliveries, logistics, quality checks, and most importantly, customer obsession. Amazon India has worked as a force to be reckoned with, giving us a push to explore the realm of e-commerce and expand our business pan-India."
Khurshid also underlined that with the help of Amazon India, ETN Services built its business and gained credibility for its services across the region.
‘Atal Tunnel ensures unimpeded transportation’
Khurshid shared that before the advent of Atal Tunnel, it was unfathomable to execute on-time deliveries in Leh, Ladakh. Traffic congestion would cause trucks to take an indefinite amount of time to deliver commodities in the region. With Atal Tunnel, the time frame for delivery has been reduced significantly and all products can now be delivered at lesser time.
“Atal Tunnel did not only cut short the delivery timeframe but also reduced the fatigue of the drivers. The tunnel has become an enabler of the growing e-commerce business in Leh, acting as the arteries of the region.”
‘Products at fingertips’
Khurshid shared that with access to Amazon, people have stopped stocking for winter since they are able to shop for essential commodities all year round, including toothpaste, shampoo, soaps, etc.
My motivation to engage with Amazon was to connect the people of Leh to the rest of the country.
“Amazon India has created a significant impact in our region by giving people access and exposure to different urban markets in the most remote areas of the country. My motivation to engage with Amazon was to connect the people of Leh to the rest of the country. It gives me a sense of pride that in the last few years, we have been able to achieve this miracle together.” he concludes.