Fab Lab Kochi

Fab Lab open for all in Kerala state

Fab Lab Kochi, Kinfra Hi-Tech Park, Park Main Road, Kalamassery, Kochi, Kerala 683503, India

Fab Lab Coworking space

Space size 280 m²

Opened in July 2015

Structure type Non Profit Organization

Explored in June 2017


Fab Lab Kochi, created by Kerala Startup Mission is a place open to all.

Main interests

Space Technology - machines & tools Community Social initiatives Entrepreneurship Robotics Education Electronics Furniture & house Self-sufficiency

This workshop is great for:

Every single person & organisation!

Interview & guided tour

Meet someone from the team & discover the space by yourself!

Our workshop

Learn more about our space, members, machines & services!

Located in the middle of the Kerala Technopark center in Kochi, Fab Lab Kerala is one of the key pillar of the governmental organization Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM), which mission is to develop a strong Technology startup ecosystem in the state of Kerala, India. Kerala state has the highest rate of literate people in India. But most of the engineers once graduated leave the state. KSUM wants to change this trend by helping them to start companies.

For that purpose, KSUM built a technology compound to educate and give all facilities and support to the startups from Kerala to raise and succeed. This place aims to provide in the same area offices, prototyping machines and access to mentorship.

That is why in July 2015, two Fab Labs were created (1 in Trivandrum, 1 in Kochi) in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), to complete the equipment of KSUM. And this is just the beginning as 20 mini Fab Labs are about to open in colleges all over the state.

Fab Lab Kochi remains open to all, and focus on education as well as on startup product development. Since last year, fabacademy courses are organized in the space, as well as many workshops to bring education on digital machines and raise startups vocation.

Fab Lab Kerala (Kochi) has on average 100 members coming regularly every month. 60% of them are startups, 25% students, 10% hobbyists and 5% of established industries.

Startups are looking for the machines to prototype their products. Most of them are also incubated by the KSUM, and have their offices next door. Students are mostly attending workshops or following the fabacademy courses, and companies are attending workshops or using facilities for some prototypes.

The attractiveness of the space for the users is also related to its prices. It is almost free to use the machines (0,5$/h for the 3D printer; 2$/h for the CNC), which allows almost anyone to come and start making.

The Fab Lab is building a community by raising the awareness of students outside the walls. The KSUM created Innovation Entrepreneurship Development Centers (IEDC), which are located in 192 colleges across the state. Those places provide a few tools to help students to start prototyping their idea, and they get to know about the fablab and its potential.

As Fab Lab Kerala is owned by the KSUM organization, it does not have a proper business model. The lab is seen as a tool, provided to all users to help them prototype they product and start their own business.

The only revenues the lab gets are linked to the use of machines, which is almost free, as the intent is more to ensure people will use them responsibly.

The lab has been built according to the guidance of the MIT on how to set up a Fab Lab (machines, space, tools…).

To understand how the Fab Lab is helping its users to develop their knowledge and projects, we must look at the level of the KSUM initiative, as it shows all the activities related to each other. These can be divided between education and startup incubation.

Regarding education, on top of the weekly workshops ran by the Fab Lab on the use of the machines, the KSUM launched in 2016 the “learn to code” program, offering more than 10000 raspberry pi to students. The Fab Lab also organizes “FAB XL” workshops across colleges. It’s a 2 day-competition between students, to make them work on projects in the Fab Lab. Winning teams get free access to the lab during 6 months and a grant to develop their prototype.

Once startups are created, the lab organizes every month pitch contests, where startups from all the state can come and win 2000$ to help them build their prototype, and be incubated by KSUM.

The lab is also building interesting partnerships with industrial companies to help its startups members. As an example, some companies will be able to buy some materials or components at a very attractive price for the startups, which they could not negotiate on their own.

For now, there is no formal process in place to help users document their projects. Projects documented are those made during fabacademy courses, and are available on the fabacademy platform.

Documentation of projects is currently a challenge for the team, who can’t follow all users to educate them on the importance of documentation.

The KSUM is encouraging this practice internally, as startups incubated need to provide quarterly reports on their advancements, but this is not led by the Fab Lab.

Located in the middle of the Kerala Technopark center in Kochi, Fab Lab Kerala is one of the key pillar of the governmental organization Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM), which mission is to develop a strong Technology startup ecosystem in the state of Kerala, India. Kerala state has the highest rate of literate people in India. But most of the engineers once graduated leave the state. KSUM wants to change this trend by helping them to start companies.

For that purpose, KSUM built a technology compound to educate and give all facilities and support to the startups from Kerala to raise and succeed. This place aims to provide in the same area offices, prototyping machines and access to mentorship.

That is why in July 2015, two Fab Labs were created (1 in Trivandrum, 1 in Kochi) in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), to complete the equipment of KSUM. And this is just the beginning as 20 mini Fab Labs are about to open in colleges all over the state.

Fab Lab Kochi remains open to all, and focus on education as well as on startup product development. Since last year, fabacademy courses are organized in the space, as well as many workshops to bring education on digital machines and raise startups vocation.

Fab Lab Kerala (Kochi) has on average 100 members coming regularly every month. 60% of them are startups, 25% students, 10% hobbyists and 5% of established industries.

Startups are looking for the machines to prototype their products. Most of them are also incubated by the KSUM, and have their offices next door. Students are mostly attending workshops or following the fabacademy courses, and companies are attending workshops or using facilities for some prototypes.

The attractiveness of the space for the users is also related to its prices. It is almost free to use the machines (0,5$/h for the 3D printer; 2$/h for the CNC), which allows almost anyone to come and start making.

The Fab Lab is building a community by raising the awareness of students outside the walls. The KSUM created Innovation Entrepreneurship Development Centers (IEDC), which are located in 192 colleges across the state. Those places provide a few tools to help students to start prototyping their idea, and they get to know about the fablab and its potential.

As Fab Lab Kerala is owned by the KSUM organization, it does not have a proper business model. The lab is seen as a tool, provided to all users to help them prototype they product and start their own business.

The only revenues the lab gets are linked to the use of machines, which is almost free, as the intent is more to ensure people will use them responsibly.

The lab has been built according to the guidance of the MIT on how to set up a Fab Lab (machines, space, tools…).

To understand how the Fab Lab is helping its users to develop their knowledge and projects, we must look at the level of the KSUM initiative, as it shows all the activities related to each other. These can be divided between education and startup incubation.

Regarding education, on top of the weekly workshops ran by the Fab Lab on the use of the machines, the KSUM launched in 2016 the “learn to code” program, offering more than 10000 raspberry pi to students. The Fab Lab also organizes “FAB XL” workshops across colleges. It’s a 2 day-competition between students, to make them work on projects in the Fab Lab. Winning teams get free access to the lab during 6 months and a grant to develop their prototype.

Once startups are created, the lab organizes every month pitch contests, where startups from all the state can come and win 2000$ to help them build their prototype, and be incubated by KSUM.

The lab is also building interesting partnerships with industrial companies to help its startups members. As an example, some companies will be able to buy some materials or components at a very attractive price for the startups, which they could not negotiate on their own.

For now, there is no formal process in place to help users document their projects. Projects documented are those made during fabacademy courses, and are available on the fabacademy platform.

Documentation of projects is currently a challenge for the team, who can’t follow all users to educate them on the importance of documentation.

The KSUM is encouraging this practice internally, as startups incubated need to provide quarterly reports on their advancements, but this is not led by the Fab Lab.

Technologies & processes available

3D printing CNC milling Electronics Laser cutting Traditional tools

Services offered

Startups & projects hosting Coworking space Open moments Workshop memberships Prototyping Coaching & project mentoring Classes & workshops FabAcademy curriculum

Our best practices

The inspiring things we do here to run our collaborative space

The FAB XL workshop

_What is it?

The FAB XL workshop is organized in colleges to show students the potential of fablabs and raise their interest in entrepreneurship.

In concrete terms?

A 2 day-workshop is organized with 40 students. During the first day, they learn what is a fablab and are shown examples of projects. The second day, they have to work by team on an idea they would like to prototype. The winning teams get a free access to the lab for 6 months and a grant to prototype their product.

Why it’s interesting?

FAB XL workshop is dedicated to raise the awareness of the students in fablabs and digital fabrication. By going directly into colleges, and allowing them to use the lab and prototype their idea is a smart way to step them into the entrepreneurship world._


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