We are excited to announce that Matchstick Ventures Fund II has completed an investment in Airspace Link. Airspace Link’s suite of solutions form the backbone of an “interstate highway system in the sky” for drones.
Drone use has (literally) taken off across the country and world. Attracted by the promise of pilotless safety, remote control, and near-infinite versatility, drone adopters are a diverse bunch. They range from hobbyists, to filmmakers and advertisers, to military and public safety agencies, to corporate majors like Amazon pursuing drone delivery.
Yet the systems governing how drones share the sky haven’t kept up with the explosion in use. It’s space-age technology operating with Wild West rules. Regulators and governments have few tools to coordinate drone movement, safety, and privacy in their airspace. Drone operators large and small can’t fly or deliver products risk-free over long distances because they lack the easy regulatory permissions and comprehensive safety and mapping data to plan ahead. This puts everyone on the ground—individuals, business, government—in danger because there’s no control of the vibrant aerial corridor above them. Because of this risk, under federal law, most drone flights aren’t allowed to fly beyond their operator’s line of site, kneecapping an entirely new transportation industry’s worth of potential.
Airspace Link makes systems to safely and effectively unlock controlled airspace for drones, offering the FAA, local governments, and aviation companies live mapping tools, regulatory and permitting software, safety data, and a public-private interface to coordinate airspace access. It works with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as a supplier to integrate drones into controlled airspace. It provides the FAA with cloud-based tools purpose-built for federal-state-local airspace coordination.
Airspace Link is also the first unified drone management software designed for state and local government, offering software-as-a-service tools to map out, permit, and authorize drone airspace. And it provides drone operators with centralized solutions to register flights with the FAA, incorporate risk data into flight planning, and standardize local rules and restrictions in one place.
Airspace’s founders are veterans at combining startups, sales, tech, and geospatial planning solutions. Co-Founder and CEO Michael Healander was a senior partner at GISinc, an industry-standard location technology company, from which he founded and spun off Geometri, a planning and analytics platform acquired by Acuity Brands. Co-Founder and CTO Daniel Bradshaw worked alongside Healander at both companies, and also has experience working in state and local government, plus building these stakeholders geospatial solutions as a consultant. Ana Healander, Co-Founder and VP of Customer Success, has 20 years of sales and account management experience, and has spent another 13 as co-owner and franchise operator of a profitable family business she grew and sold.
Founders: Michael Healander
HQ: Detroit, Michigan