India's biggest startup hub inaugurated in Kochi; will position Kerala as global IT centre


The Integrated Startup Complex, spread over 1,80,000 sq ft, can accommodate more than 500 firms and will provide direct jobs to 2.5 lakh people in the IT sector.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday inaugurated an Integrated Startup Complex under the Kerala Startup Mission in Kochi. The eight-floor facility, spread across 1.82 lakh sq ft in Kalamassery, is the largest startup hub in India.

Speaking at the event, Vijayan said that the government aimed to develop the state into the biggest Information Technology hub in the world. Set across 13.2 acres, this Technology Innovation Zone (TIZ) will house incubators, accelaerators, and centres of excellence in emerging technologies, and will provide high quality infrastructure for the development and growth of startups.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan addresses the gathering.

The chief minister also inaugurated the ultra-modern Maker Village, which will promote hardware startups; Bionest, for medical technologies; BRINC, the country’s first international accelerator for hardware startups; BRIC , which aids in developing solutions for cancer diagnosis and care; and a Centre of Excellence set up by industry majors such as UNITY.

“We are also planning to give direct jobs to 2.5 lakh people in IT,” he said, adding that the government was working to ensure that information technology fosters social development.

M Sivasankar, Secretary to the Government of Kerala’s Electronics and IT Department, said the entire building had already been sold to startups. “This has never happened in our country, where it usually takes a couple of years for an incubator to get the whole area occupied,” he said. “The first three floors of the new complex have been furnished; the rest of the floors have already been allotted to various startups.”

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Over 100 startups in various stages of growth are already operating in the three incubators in TIZ. Officials pointed out that TIZ was set to become the country’s largest Work-Live-Play space exclusively dedicated to startups. The Maker Village, set up by the IIITM-K in association with KSUM and supported by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, houses 65 startups working in electronics hardware technologies.

Bionest, a biotech startup centre set up by KSUM in association with Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB) with financial assistance from BIRAC, has 20 companies involved in deep research in biotechnology and allied fields.

During the last 12 months of operation, the startups operating in TIZ are said to have filed over 30 patent applications, making it one of the largest IP-based incubation spaces in the country.