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Kerala: Driving India’s Hardware Startup Revolution Report 2021

Datalabs by Inc42 Plus

Kerala: Driving India’s Hardware Startup Revolution Report 2021

Kerala has been India’s hardware innovation hub for a long time. The journey that took off in 1973 with Keltron — a manufacturer of various electronic products — has now culminated in a slew of new-age, innovative startups such as Sastra Robotics, VST Mobility, ASIMoV Robotics and more. Most importantly, a majority of these startups have come forward to the state’s rescue in times of crisis, be it a turbulent tale of floods, the 2018 Nipah virus outbreak or the current Covid-19 pandemic.

In this report, we give you a glimpse of Kerala’s 80+ hardware startups and the journeys and roles of enablers such as the Maker Village, Fablabs and more, in helping the state metamorphose into the largest hardware hub of India.

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kerala report

Quoted & Trusted By

the economist
business insider
cb insights
the huffington post
the economic times
live mint
the times of india

Key Highlights

With the state government’s growing interest in the hardware market, the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) set up incubator Maker Village in 2015 through its ESDM policy. Today, Maker Village has become the most proactive hardware incubator in the country.

Till 2017, Kerala catered to more than 5% of the total demand for electronics in the country with estimated consumption at $2.8 Bn, according to an interim report on the state’s hardware ecosystem. Today, Kerala houses a huge market for automobile and healthcare electronics, presenting an attractive opportunity for investors.


Hardware Startups Incubated At Maker Village


Startups Are DPIIT Registered


Startups Are Revenue-Making

INR 20 Cr+

Financial Support Provided To Hardware Startups

Table Of Contents

  • Executive Summary
  • The Indian Hardware Startup Ecosystem
  • Evolution of Kerala’s Hardware Ecosystem
  • Hardware Startups In Kerala: An Overview
  • Maker Village: The Propeller Of Kerala’s Hardware Ecosystem
  • The Makerspaces In Kerala
  • The Government’s Initiatives
  • The Most Promising Hardware Startups From Kerala
  • The Corporate Connect
  • Hardware Startups To The Rescue
  • Fighting Challenges, Eyeing Next Level Of Growth
  • What’s Next For The Hardware Hotbed Of India?


Kerala’s robust social and intellectual infrastructure focussed on innovation has helped it secure the title of Top Performer for two years in a row in the Indian government’s state startup ranking. Today, the state is home to more than 2,200 startups and 230+ technical colleges where it runs its Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Centres (IEDCs) and nurtures more than 10K aspiring entrepreneurs.
The Kerala government took the ground-up approach to develop its hardware ecosystem. Kerala first built an ecosystem, typically developed around the needs of the existing startups clustered in a place, and then attracted more startups. The state authorities kept adding more facilities to the existing infrastructure based on further requirements of the startups. The biggest example of this is the Maker Village, often lauded as India’s largest hardware incubator.
To recognise and acknowledge the state’s efforts and shine a light on the innovative hardware startups it houses, the report titled Kerala: Driving India’s Hardware Startup Revolution by Inc42 Plus dives deep into the journey of the state that has emerged as the hardware hotbed of India. Powered by KSUM, the report has the Maker Village as its knowledge partner.

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