Perry DiClemente has been working in the aerospace industry for years, helping design new aircraft. That lifetime’s worth of work inspired him to start his own company, Wave Aircraft.
“We saw a need that wasn’t being filled,” DiClemente says. “It is the next evolution in amphibian aircraft.”
The West Bloomfield-based startup is developing a go-everywhere aircraft that can comfortably land on a runway or on water. Its hull technology can be used on either light jets or turbo-prop airplanes. The hull allows for smoother landings and takeoffs on water and also necessitates a shorter space to land or take off. The company is targeting the business-aircraft class.
Wave Aircraft’s team of eight people recently won the NextEnergy Transport & New Mobility award at last month’s Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competitionin Detroit. The $25,000 cash prize will go toward building the startup’s drone prototype, which should take off early next year.
DiClemente says his team was surprised at its win but took a lot away from the competition, including how best to pitch the startup and tighten up its business plan, valuable expertise for a new firm developing cutting-edge technology.
“We’re a clean-sheet startup project,” DiClemente says.
Source: Perry DiClemente, founder & CEO of Wave Aircraft
Writer: Jon Zemke