Dr. K. Chandramohan: A Legend In The Indian Logistics Industry | CEOInsights Vendor
Dr. K. Chandramohan: A Legend In The Indian Logistics Industry

Dr. K. Chandramohan: A Legend In The Indian Logistics Industry

Dr. K. Chandramohan,  Founder, Chairman & MD, NTC Group

Dr. K. Chandramohan

Founder, Chairman & MD, NTC Group

Located 3KM north of Rudraprayag, Koteshwar Hills is an epitome of serenity 8000 feet above sea level. If you remember the adage: it is a difficult road that often leads to beautiful destinations, it is literally true in the case of Koteshwar. Even SUVs have difficulties reaching the destination. In 2019, when the construction of the Koteshwar Substation was in progress, transporting 14 transformers weighing 136 Tons each became an arduous task. The transformer manufacturer sought the help and experience of NTC Logistics to complete the task. Combining meticulous planning with its decades-strong experience and innovative thought process, NTC made the assignment look easy, tackling a myriad of challenges, including creating a temporary infrastructure for transport by road widening, rock blasting, removing overhead structure and gradient normalization; to say nothing of the need to shift the transformers to special heavy-duty trailers at challenging bends in hilly terrains and the freezing temperature. NTC completed the task with flying colors.

In fact, this is just one among the many of the extremely challenging logistics projects the company has accomplished over the years. NTC reminds us of the fact that the third-party logistics services providers have come a long way over the years to become a critical part of almost all business activities across industries from e-Commerce to Engineering and Infrastructure mega projects.

The story of NTC Logistics, the flagship company of NTC Group, is also the story of its founder K. Chandramohan, one of the foremen of the Indian logistics and supply chain industry. Dwelling from Namakkal, a transportation hub in Tamil Nadu, Chandramohan witnessed heavy vehicles cruising on roads every day as early as his childhood. As he grew, his enthusiasm grew alongside him, and it didn't take much time for him to recognize the immense growth potential of India's logistics and supply chain industry. With a larger vision in mind, Chandramohan kick-started his professional career as the General Manager of a private logistics company. His growing passion eventually inspired him to establish a general transportation company called the 'Namakkal Transport Carriers' (NTC) in 1997 when he was just 27 years old! Over the last 24 years, NTC Group has developed into an integrated supply chain and logistics solution provider from being a general transportation company.

"As The Needs Of The Customers Grew Exponentially, NTC Brought Manufacturing Facilities In-House And Equipped Itself To Move Odc"

On the other hand, with its continuously expanding global footprint, NTC Group today is a family of over 5000 people. Through its independent business ventures, the group has expanded its horizons to different fields such as engineering, infrastructure, renewable energy, manufacturing,technology,international courier, agro-solutions, organic farms, and food products development. Chandramohan is also the recipient of many awards for his dynamic leadership and creating a niche in the ODC [Over Dimensional Cargo] segment an unparalleled feat in the history of Indian logistics. I recently got an opportunity to engage in an exclusive interaction with Chandramohan. He walks us through his journey over the years and the company's latest endeavors.

After 25 Years, How Would You Define NTC Logistics As An Organization? Could You Summarize The Unique Propositions That Have Helped The Company Be In A Market-Leading Position?
NTC is the seventh-largest owner of a specialized fleet of transport vehicles globally and the only Indian company to be listed in the top 25, ranked by ICT50, 2021. NTC is capable enough to move any cargo between 100 gms and 1000 tons on any terrain to any location in the world.

One of the major aspects is our end-to-end approach, comprehensive capabilities, and courage to accept challenges. NTC Logistics is the first logistics company in India to handle the movement of long wind blades starting with a 23.5-meter blade. We are also unique with our dedicated R& D efforts. For instance, thanks to our continuous R&D efforts and the successful launch of Quad and Penta Axles, we are the first in India to obtain permission to use extendable trailers. Such consistent efforts have enabled us to transport even the 83-meter wind blades, the longest in India today.

The enormous experience gained in surface transportation has enabled NTC to introduce advanced logistics equipment to the Indian market, such as Rotor Blade Adapters, Tower Adapters and Girder Bridges. These developments have helped the industry grow tremendously and have paved the way for social change in terms of job creation, skill development, infrastructure development, investments, etc.

You have been a part of india's logistics industry for nearly three decades and have provided game-changing solutions. What were the challenges you had to over come to
be at this spot? Also, what led you to the launch of NTC training academy?
We have faced several challenges right from the shortage in vehicles and funding. More importantly, it was very difficult to find skilled drivers for handling ODC. There were no institutions that provided efficient driver training. NTC sensed the situation that an establishment is the need of the hour. So, NTC Logistics focused specifically on providing expert training to upskill the drivers in handling ODC, specialized vehicles, and equipment. These developments in this direction led to the establishment of the NTC Training Academy that efficiently imparts the necessary skills to the drivers. Moreover, as every project and ODC consignment is unique, the very nature of the business has been challenging too.

Today, NTC Logistics Has Emerged Into NTC Group, A Conglomerate Consisting Of Diversified Businesses, Contributing To Major Economy Strengthening Sectors In The Country With Operations In Sri Lanka,Singapore,Malaysia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, UAE, USA, And Saudi Arabia

But, NTC persevered in improving the situation by taking calculated risks and never compromising on the quality of its service. This has developed a culture of constant improvisation that allows for more innovation. Consequently, we have mastered the techniques to customize vehicles inhouse to adapt to the uniqueness of the projects, changing market scenarios, and customer requirements.

As the customers' needs grew exponentially, NTC brought manufacturing facilities in-house and equipped itself to move ODC. This marked the decision to manufacture trailers inhouse, which allowed for their customization within a short span. ODC requires special permissions and infrastructure to develop roads for navigation, and we cannot always depend on a third party. So there was a need for an in-house specifically for the civil and infrastructure development purposes, which marked the inception of NTC Infrastructure and Engineering.

NTC Today Has An Intact Reputation. How Would You Reminisce About The Journey And Most Significant Milestones? What's Your Success Mantra?
In the initial phase of our business, more than the struggles to enter the heavy logistics market, we faced challenges in expanding and establishing ourselves as a recognizable brand. As the heavy logistics industry is complex and time-consuming, it needs experience, perfection, and safety at every stage. Poor road infrastructure, remote installations, over dimensional cargo, lack of suitable vehicles, and unavailability of the skilled workforce were all challenging, leading to delays in project execution.

NTC Logistics made a mark over the last 20 years through its success mantra `Constant monitoring and Consistent Progress. We always went beyond what we thought was possible with our resources. This is why we could cover almost all the verticals in the logistics sector despite starting with general transportation. The same will be our success strategy way forward.

Today, NTC Logistics has emerged into NTC Group, a conglomerate consisting of diversified businesses, contributing to major economy strengthening sectors in the country with operations in Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, UAE, US, and Saudi Arabia. I am very happy that our brand has a footprint in the continent of Australia now as we now have strong support to expand our territories with the introduction of NTC Tanshu in Australia.

What's New With NTC? Tell Us About Your Latest Endeavors.
We are now establishing a state-of-the-art facility for manufacturing Windmill Towers of 100 Acres in Tuticorin. With that, NTC Group's Shreevari Energy has forayed into the renewable energy segment and will serve the domestic and export requirements of international OEMs & IPPs. We anticipate an enhanced opportunity to contribute to the renewable energy space in South India.

NTC Infrastructure and Engineering recently executed a 60 MLD TTRO project in Koyembedu. We are also working on a few similar projects in the city. In the Wind Energy segment, NTC has made a significant contribution towards building a greener India with our separate vertical for renewable energy logistics.

As most wind clients are looking for a one-stop solution in implementing their projects, with our group company called Everrenew Energy, we provide EPC (Engineering, Procurement & Construction) solutions. As an end-to-end solution provider, Everrenew has a better potential to attract clients.

On the other hand, SCINNTC our Supply Chain Solution company currently has five million square feet of warehouse space and will be creating Chemical Warehousing capability across the country. We have also stepped into express parcel services with our group company, Everest International Xpress. Further, we have also started developing organic food products under our Organic Mart brand and plan to open many outlets. Similarly, we made several
such business initiatives last year that are going to create several milestones in the years to come. These steps, we are sure, will not only help the group to keep its legacy but also to advance further as a global leader.

How Has Been Your Response To The Challenges Posed By The Covid-Affected Market And The Need For New Strategies?
This is not the first time we are facing a crisis. We witnessed a crisis once in 2008 and again in 2013, but they were purely economic. The COVID crisis is a socio-economic crisis affecting the economy and the well being of the people as well. We overcame this recession by closely monitoring the overheads and focused more on cost reduction.

As Mentioned Earlier Our Mantra Is Constant Monitoring And Consistent Progress
NTC Group has highly capable leaders in every business vertical who have decades of hands-on and proven experience at every level in their domain. We do not develop bosses here. We only nurture leaders who encourage every individual's potential to find expression within the teams. We have recognized that this is our time for Transformation, Growth and Expansion.

Going Forward, What Are The Changes In Market Behavior That You Anticipate, And What Opportunities Do You Foresee As A Leader?
Logistics is still an unorganized sector, and we have to integrate e-Commerce to heavy lifts as a single-window solution, and the strategies for that are in process from within the group.

As the pandemic hits the world's economic situation, India has the potential to be the next place of business. Hence, the logistics industry has a great scope for growth and improvement in the country.

NTC Group has been gathering a fresh talent pool intending to see these young, vibrant people leading different areas within the organization. Like many big corporations, we will contribute to crucial Nation-Building activities and be a part of its growth. The employment opportunities we are going to provide will, directly and indirectly, touch the lives of 20,000 people.

Dr. K. Chandramohan, Founder, Chairman & MD, NTC Group
An entrepreneur and visionary, Dr. K. Chandramohan laid the foundations for NTC Logistics in 1997 when he was just 27 years old. With an MBA in Logistics & Supply Chain Management and over 25 years of experience, he is the recipient of many awards for his dynamic leadership and creating a niche in the ODC segment that is unparalleled in the history of Indian logistics. Under his chairmanship, NTC Logistics is ranked seventh in the list of the world's largest specialized vehicles and equipment owners by ICT-50.

As an avid sports enthusiast passionate about Badminton, Dr. K. Chandramohan inspires to take up sports and lends a hand to talented athletes in rural areas to showcase their talent in the national and international arenas through his Young Champions Sports Association. A known philanthropist, he also makes persistent efforts to improve the health, well being, and lives of the impoverished in the country.

•Food Styling & Food Photography:TV Commercials, Print ads, Food Calendars, Recipe Books and Menus.
•Adventure Travel:Travelled to five continents and more than 100 popular cities & locations.
•Writing:Blogger and a Published Author.
•Fitness:Cross-fit functional training and Power Lifting (Podium finishes at district level).
•Favorite Cuisine:•Experiential World Cuisines and Modernist Indian.
•Favorite Book:•'The New Gold Standard: 5 leadership principles for creating a legendry customer service of Ritz Carlton Hotel Company' by Joseph Michelli.
•Favorite Travel Destinations:
•New Zealand, Alaska and Japan.

•Henry Giessenbier Fellowship award
•Rajiv Gandhi Shiromani Award ­ 2006
•Indira Gandhi Sadbhavana Award ­ 2006
•Pride of India Award ­ 2007
•International Gold Star Millennium Award ­ 2007
•Kamal Patra Award ­ 2009
•Ten Outstanding Businessman, Industrialist, Personality (TOBIP Award) ­ 2009(given by Junior Chamber International -India)
•Doctorate of Letters by International Tamil University, USA ­ 2010
•Outstanding Entrepreneurship Award for two consecutive years ­ 2010 & 2011 (by Enterprise Asia­ Kuala Lumpur)
•Seva Chakra Puraskar Award ­ 2011 (by Exclusive Aajtak Newspaper in association with All India Economy Survey Awards Council)
•South East CEO Conclave award ­ 2012 (by South-East India Cargo & Logistics)
•Dynamic Entrepreneur of the Year award ­ 2012(by South-East India Cargo& Logistics)
•TRANSPORT SAMRAT award given by the All India Motor Transport Congress, New Delhi
•Kaalingarayan Award­ 2012 given by Kongunadu Arakattalai
•Kongu Sadhanaiyalar Award ­ 2013 awarded by Kongu Nanbargal Sangam
•Bodhidharma Award ­ 2013
•The Social Activist award in 2020 from ET NOW ­ at the WORLD CSR DAY CONGRESS, Mumbai
•Lifetime Achievement Award ­ 2021 from Saveetha Institutions in recognition of his remarkable feats in Logistics, Engineering and Renewable Energy spaces

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