Chennai Warehousing Market Report – 2020


The industrial and warehouse market in Chennai had a somewhat weak FY 2020 compared to the previous year. Transaction volume decreased by 19 percentage yearly, from 0.4 million square metres (4.2 million square feet) to 0.3 million square metres (3.4 million square feet). This reduction was primarily caused by a shortage of high-quality supply and a downturn in the automotive industry.

For years, the city has been dubbed the ‘Detroit of India’ due to its substantial automobile manufacturing presence.
Textiles and heavy industry manufacturing are two more trades that persists in Chennai. Without question, these three activities have been and continue to be the primary drivers of the industrial and warehousing markets in the city.

Since British India, the city’s location has been critical to its evolution and development as a commercial centre. The city, which is located directly on the sea, is the first significant stop on India’s east coast in the Bay of Bengal. It is a major commercial hub with two major ports – Chennai Port (India’s second largest container port) and Ennore Port – as well as recently constructed terminals such as the Kattupalli Port. This infrastructure is critical to the city’s warehousing and industrial operations.

warehousing in chennai

Warehousing activity in Chennai is mostly focused in three clusters: one spanning the city’s south-west and west sides, another spanning the city’s northern belt, and a third across the city’s south.
The Sriperumbudur – Oragadam cluster is located between the Grand Southern Trunk Road (GST Road / Chennai – Trichi Highway) in the south and the Poonamallee High Road (Mumbai Highway) in the west. Known for manufacturing, this cluster is home to automotive and related industries.

The NH 16 – Periyapalayam warehousing cluster is located north of the Grand Northern Trunk Road. Traditionally an industrial belt, this cluster has recently attracted the attention of e-commerce businesses, enterprises in the Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector, and large Third-Party Logistics (3PL) providers. The Maraimalai Nagar cluster comprises warehouses located along the eastern side of the south-moving old NH 45. These places include Maraimalai Nagar, Mahindra World City, and Gokulapuram.

Top Warehouse Occupiers in Chennai

OccupierIndustryWarehouse Cluster
TPI CompositeManufacturingSriperumbudur - Oragadam
VistasManufacturingSriperumbudur - Oragadam
Future Supply Chain3PLNH 16- Periyapalayam
Kerry Indev3PLSriperumbudur - Oragadam
LS AutomotiveManufacturingSriperumbudur - Oragadam

In FY 2019, the e-commerce segment increased transaction activity to 8% of total transactions, and they favoured warehouses in the Madhavaram – Red Hills area of the NH 16 – Periyapalayam warehousing cluster.
In comparison, warehouse activity in the e-commerce sector amounted for just 3% of total transactions in FY 2020. Rather than being a threat, this worrisome decline is the result of the redistribution of warehousing demand. This year, various e-commerce and FMCG companies opted for 3PLs to handle their logistics needs, resulting in their numbers declining and 3PLs’ warehousing transactions increasing to 36%, the second-highest rate for a sector in the total of FY 2020 transactions.

On the other hand, the manufacturing industry accounted for more than half of all warehousing transactions in FY 2020, accounting for 53% of all transactions. Inevitably, this increased the warehousing activity in the Sriperumbudur – Oragadam cluster, which now accounts for a staggering 67 percent of all transactions in Chennai, owing to its status as the city’s manufacturing hub.

Land Rates and Warehouse Rents in Chennai

Rentals remained mostly steady through FY 2020, with some portions of the Sriperumbudur – Oragadam cluster experiencing modest appreciation due to a rise in storage demand from engineering and manufacturing industries.

Warehouse ClusterLocationLand Rent ( INR mn/acre)
Sriperumbudur - Oragadam ClusterSriperumbudur15 - 25
Oragadam20 - 30
Mappedu10 - 15
Mannur17 - 23
Pollivakkam13 - 15
NH 16 - Periyapalayam ClusterCholavaram11 - 13
Red Hills13 -18
Karanodai15 - 20
Periyapalayam10 -15
Maraimalai Nagar ClusterMahindra World City35
Marimalai Nagar25 - 30

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