Kochi: Kerala is working towards a four-fold increase in the number of startups by aiming to take their total to 15,000 in the next five years, said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, here on Saturday.
He said this after inaugurating a pioneering digital hub by the Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM).
The state-of-the-art digital hub set up by KSUM is billed as South Asia’s largest product development centre as it is in over 2 lakh square feet of built-up space.
It houses a design incubator, healthcare incubator, Center of Excellence (CoE) for Mouser Electronics, co-working spaces, design studios, investors hive and an innovation centre.
“To realise the plan of 15,000 startups, the government will set up technology labs and incubators that will play a critical role for nascent firms to transform the state into a knowledge society,” said Vijayan.
“We are particular that shortage of funds should not stand in the way of conversion of a brilliant innovative idea into marketing reality,” added Vijayan.
KSUM provides interest-free loans to startups.
Venture funding with a corpus of Rs 750 crore will be made available. Besides venture capital worth Rs 250 crore is anticipated from financial institutions such as Kerala Bank, KSIDC, KFC and KSFE.
Minister for Industries P. Rajeev said the government was determined to go ahead with its plans to encourage the state’s young entrepreneurs.
“We are giving focus to the semiconductor sector and are in talks with companies in Belgium,” said Rajeev.
KSUM, is the state’s 2006-founded nodal agency for entrepreneurship development and incubation activities.