Einride Portraits: Diganto, Commercial director
Einride Portraits: Diganto, Commercial director
Diganto Choudhury is a true team player whose secret to sales success is trust and transparency. Working at Einride, he doesn’t simply close the deal and move on; he fosters long-term partnerships for impactful transformation. And that’s not the only wholesome fostering you will find the former consultant doing.
What is your role at Einride?
I joined the company in early 2022 as the 20th North American hire. Perhaps a sign of my enthusiasm is the fact that I took the interview while on my honeymoon! As a member of the Business Development team, I help to “grow the engine”, so to speak. That is, bring in the revenue, which is what enables the whole company to tick and effect positive change. In order to do that, I really need to build trust with our customers.
It’s an interesting role because it’s not your typical product or service. Einride doesn’t just partner with companies to “only” move goods for them. We help the business transform their operations in a way that drives long-term impact. This is about much more than providing transportation services – this is about providing “freight mobility” as a service. In other words, we enable our customers to unlock more intelligent movement of goods. Smoother and more efficient – and, of course, more sustainable.
Why did you join Einride?
Prior to joining Einride, I was a business consultant with a focus on strategy and operations. I gained and learned so much, however, there was something I felt I was missing out on. And it comes back to the fact that as a consultant, you don’t own the actions of your recommendations. I wanted to make a broader impact with my work – and see it.
When it was time for a change, I knew I wanted to be part of a mission-driven organization – somewhere that was creating an impact not only for its customers and partners but also for society and the environment. I also wanted to join a rapidly growing company – to help drive scale, which further amplifies the impact. Einride ticked all the boxes.
When it comes to transportation and the need to make it sustainable, it’s a tough, complicated problem. And it must be solved. We can't just say someone else will solve it. That's really the reason I joined Einride – because we are taking a leading step in solving a complicated problem that has simply not been solved yet.
How do you explain Einride’s offering to people?
A business wanting to switch to electric freight operations today might have to speak to at least 15 different parties. It’s a really complicated process. However, at Einride, we provide a one-stop “turnkey” solution for shippers to go electric – and with a good business case.
Importantly, it’s not just that we’ll do it today; we will also partner with them over the coming years to help them scale up their electric freight operations. This is not about just running a 2-truck pilot and then stopping. Our customers are looking to scale and make meaningful reductions to their carbon footprints, which means they need an ecosystem partner that they can count on. So when I work with customers, I really need to work on building that trust. It’s not just about closing a deal; it’s about collaborating over an extended period of time to make a lasting impact.
Why might a shipper choose to go electric with Einride?
Based on the analysis we do through our Einride Saga platform, we can identify a certain percentage of the shipper’s network that is prime to go electric, today. So we can say to the shipper: “You can go electric on X percent of your network – here’s what that business case would look like based on our data.”
When it comes to making that change happen, we can leverage our operational expertise. Right now, Einride has one of the largest electric fleets in operation in North America. Our operations teams know how to run these trucks really well – harnessing digital capabilities in order to maximize the utilization of assets, which makes for a stronger business case.
One thing that is attractive about Einride to shippers is that we can help them electrify not only in states like California – where subsidies are more generous – but also in other states. We have vehicles in 7 states, and counting. Businesses who ship with us can access electric freight capacity based on a monthly subscription, meaning they don’t need to make costly overhead investments in vehicles or infrastructure.
What do you especially enjoy about your role?
I really enjoy creative problem solving and forming long-term partnerships with our customers. Sharing the evidence with them, convincing them, and also sharing my passion – that this is the future, and this is why you should work with Einride – this is what I love. Showing people what’s possible and helping them make it happen.
It certainly isn’t always easy. But at the same time, if operating electric fleets efficiently at scale were an easy nut to crack, it wouldn’t have been fun. Instead, it’s a complex challenge. Getting our team working with customers, suppliers, technology partners, government entities, and more – aligning everyone to work towards a common goal – that’s what makes it fun.
I’m one of those people who love working in teams. I believe 1 plus 1 equals 3. There are synergies you can get out of a team that you wouldn’t get from working on your own. But in this role, it’s not only about working with teams within my own company. It’s also about working with the customer and their respective teams. So you’re working collaboratively with people in the sustainability, supply chain, or transportation departments. Then you’re working with external parties, from utility companies to state entities to innovation bodies. Meanwhile, within Einride, I’ll be working with colleagues ranging from solution architects to deployment specialists to operational personnel.
It's lots of different teams working toward one objective: to get electric trucks on the road with maximum efficiency. I find that especially rewarding.
What do you think of Einride’s vision?
I love that Einride is thinking about how it can help address the issues plaguing the industry through solutions that are built from the ground up. And I like that if we’ve tried something and it didn’t work, we’re able to accept it and take the learnings forward. In this way, we’re able to execute, adapt and evolve at pace.
I do believe that our autonomous vehicle is an important representation of what Einride is working to enable: transportation that is, at its core, sustainable but also resilient – with the highest levels of efficiency enabled by the latest technologies, including digital intelligence and advanced hardware.
One of the reasons I joined the company was because I had listened to different podcasts featuring the founders, Robert and Linnéa, who struck me as very authentic leaders. I believe founders are very important when it comes to growing organizations. They drive the vision, and they set the tone.
In listening to their interviews, I respected their transparency in admitting that they didn’t have all the answers yet. It makes sense: if you’re leading the way and bringing new solutions to the market, as you solve some of the challenges, others will naturally arise. I felt they brought something that this space needed – a very bold vision, but one that is grounded in the realities of the world.
Also, I've never been in a situation where I’ve had a thought or idea and felt that I couldn’t say something. I know I can always speak up and advocate for what I believe is best. And if viewpoints differ, that’s OK. We will come to a decision, and we’ll jointly commit to it. I think that kind of mindset – where we embrace a diversity of viewpoints – is something I credit the founders for instilling across the company.
How have your experiences helped you in this role?
I’m of Indian origin but grew up in Nigeria. At school, other kids would tell me I wasn’t Nigerian. When visiting India, some would tell me I wasn’t Indian. So that was a lot to manage as a kid. Then I came to the US for college, which also came with certain challenges when it came to my cultural identity.
Dealing with adversities as a kid and young adult was tough, but it made me appreciate the value of connecting with different people with unique experiences, viewpoints and personalities – not just people of different cultural backgrounds but all types of diversity.
No doubt, this has helped me in my work. I feel I’ve become better equipped to understand the reasoning and motivations behind the other person’s position. I guess you could say it’s made me more empathetic. It’s given me patience, which helps me get a better picture of the challenges someone is facing. And it’s made me more resilient in instances where things don’t go the way I'd hoped.
What are some of your interests outside of work?
I love animals, especially dogs. During the pandemic, I began fostering dogs. Here in Savannah, Georgia, there are sadly a lot of homeless dogs. So I would take one in, perhaps for just a few days – or it could be for up to six months. I’ve looked after older dogs as well as puppies as young as 3 weeks old – which I’ve had to bottle feed until they are adoptable, at 10 weeks. All in all, I’ve now fostered more than 50 dogs. It means that instead of having to be euthanized, they get the chance to be rehomed. So I’m glad I can be of service to the community in this way.
I also love playing soccer at a semi-competitive level, and I try to go to the gym 5 days a week – mainly to stay fit because I want to play soccer! And I love to travel. My wife and I have a holiday policy. We go on a holiday every year. One of us gets to pick the country we travel to, and then the following year, we swap turns. The other person has to say yes. You can only veto one country every 5 years. My sales negotiation skills won’t earn me any extra leeway there!
Want to join Diganto as a true team player at Einride? We are always on the lookout for spirited and ambitious people who can bring relevant expertise to our team. Check out the Einride careers page to see our open positions.