MICROLISE, the transport management solutions firm based in Nottinghamshire, is to provide pioneering technology to Tata Motors, India’s largest commercial vehicles manufacturer, in a move which is expected to transform the country’s commercial transport industry.
In a multi-million pound deal signed today (thurs), the initial five-year contract will see Microlise supply Tata Motors with its specialist fleet telematics solutions. Microlise will supply the company with in vehicle hardware and a web-based portal to allow Tata Motors customers to manage their transport fleets efficiently and safely.
Microlise, the £25 million turnover market leader in the transport telematics sector, has been speaking to the global giant for several months. Micolise’s products enable customers to reduce operating costs and environmental impact by maximising the efficient of their transportation.
Locally, the new Tata Motors contract will see Microlise create 10 jobs initially. Recruitment for those posts has already begun and a further 10 jobs are likely to be created over the first 12 months of the contract.
Ravi Pisharody, executive director of the commercial vehicles business unit at Tata Motors in New Delhi, said: “As the leading commercial vehicle manufacturer in India, we have been spearheading the change in the Indian transport industry for many years now.
“We as Tata Motors wish to lead the shift towards electronic control of drivelines and other vehicle systems. We also wish to harness the power and potential of such a digital approach by introducing advanced telematics and fleet management services. Tata FleetMan’s partnership with Microlise is a step in that direction. We firmly believe that this association has the potential to transform the way commercial vehicle fleets are managed in India.”
Nadeem Raza, MD at Microlise, said: “Microlise is extremely proud and excited to be working with Tata Motors. The cultural fit between the two organisations, and a very clear shared vision, has meant that both companies have been able to develop the new Tata FleetMan system, ensuring that it will not only address the requirements of Indian transport companies today, but will continue to deliver future features and functions, to meet ever increasing demands that will be placed on transport operations as the exciting growth story in the Indian economy continues.
“The new Tata FleetMan system will be based on the market leading Microlise platform that is currently installed in over 150,000 vehicles around the world and used by some of the biggest transport and logistics companies like DHL, Tesco and Carrefour for significant cost savings and efficiency improvements.”
Microlise is a private firm set up 30 years ago. It has recently announced its sixth year of revenue grown, and in the last 12 months has grown its workforce by nearly 20%. Microlise currently employs 250 people at its Eastwood base and this deal is set to boost this number over the coming years, added Mr Raza.
Microlise’s primary base of operations is in the UK where the majority of customers are based. It operates internationally across 139 countries in total and provides products in 28 languages.
“While we are headquartered in the UK, we are significantly investing in the creation of an India-based operation,” added Mr Raza.
“Microlise invests heavily in research and development each year. Around 70% of new hires over the past 12 months have been deployed in research and product development to ensure our solutions remain innovative and cutting edge. In terms of spend, our commitment to research and development represents around £3 million each year.”
Tata Motors launched the Tata Fleetman Telematics and Fleet Management services brand in India two years ago, in response to growing market needs for better fleet control and greater fleet utilisation.
As market leader, Tata Motors recognised while basic services served transporters well, it needed the right partner to meet customers’ needs for more sophisticated and technologically complex applications. Along with the introduction of service products in these areas, the partnership with Microlise will also start ongoing development of the new Tata Fleetman system, addressing future needs of the logistics and transportation Industry.
Some of the advanced Fleet Telematics applications and services planned for introduction by the partnership include emergency SOS – when the vehicle driver can send an urgent message to the transport owner in an emergency, and trip management – a tool to track and evaluate vehicle trips. Other aspects include driving assessment and vehicle health management.
The deal was assisted by government department UK Trade & Investment which supported Microlise.
UK Trade Minister Lord Livingston said: “I’m delighted that Microlise has signed this deal to supply Tata Motors with telematics technology in India and UKTI has been able to support them.
“This is a great example of an innovative, fast growing British company exporting a new technology and collaborating with Tata, a leading global brand. India is one of the fastest-growing economies in the world and there is a huge opportunity to increase British exports there.”