In 1983 two high school friends, Jay Godsall and Michel Rugema, attended an African diplomatic lunch for landlocked countries, hosted in Ottawa. Michel was trying to help Jay expand his lawn mowing business in the embassy community and it was supposed to be a simple intro meal. Halfway through lunch, a diplomat from Burundi named Ladislas suggested that central Africa is the harshest place in the world for transport, but that landlocked Africa could be the land of opportunity if they could only get a transport system. Jay countered that Canada is the harshest place in the world for transport, explaining that Canada invented the bush plane and has the most advanced remote area logistics entrepreneurs. He then did what entrepreneurs often do: he offered to help fix the problem
It was a departure from mowing lawns, but Jay's dad, grandfather, and cousins were involved with bush planes and remote area businesses, so he suggested to the diplomats that he and Michel could talk to some people about creating an aircraft to solve the problem.
They didn't think it would take 30 years, but after several challenging starts, Jay founded Solar Ship Inc. in 2006 to build aircraft that fly anywhere without the need for fuel, roads or infrastructure. Since 2006, Solar Ship has recruited world leaders in aviation, energy, logistics, advanced materials, finance, and remote operations.