institution helps start-ups in Bangalore, the city most associated with India's software industry that is about 550 km (340 miles) north of Kochi.
"There are not that many entrepreneurs in India, and there are hardly any in Kerala who have the expertise to be able to build, scale and sell strong software companies," said Mohan.
"If you have not been there and done that before, what advice will you give?"
But Bangalore has not been able to nurture a start-up culture of any significance either. It has many aspiring CEOs and optimistic financiers, but they are also struggling with a maze of regulations and half-hearted government support.
LACK OF INGENUITY
The newer start-ups in Bangalore or Kerala are eying products not services. Many bring ideas catering to the booming market of domestic online shoppers, like Flipkart, the nation's most heavily financed e-commerce company. But financial backers for such ventures are few and far between.
"We are a fixed-deposit country," said Rajesh Sawhney, founder of GSF Superangels that provides angel and seed funding to start-ups. "Our investors are risk-averse. They don't trust young people with their money."
Fewer than 150 start-ups are promoted by venture capital or angel investors annually in India. There are over 60,000 angel investments, made in the early stages of a start-up, alone per year in the United States, according to an Indian government report.
Experts believe India is handicapped by a lack of ingenuity.
It ranks 64th on the Global Innovation Index, much below other BRICS nations. Indian graduates, largely trained in services, have difficulty innovating beyond that approach.
Barely 700 technology product startups are launched every year in India versus over 14,000 in the United States, according to the Microsoft Accelerator database.
For India's risk-averse middle-class, entrepreneurship is the last recourse of the unemployed.
"If you go to a function, and someone asks you where you are working, and if you don't say Infosys or Wipro, they say: 'Oh you did not get placement (for a job)'," said Startup Village member Sreekumar Ravi.
Ravi is working on creating an affordable multi-touch computing surface that could change the way people window shop in malls or place orders