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Meet Grounded’s Sam Shapiro

April 16, 2024

As a commitment to bolstering Michigan’s startup economy, MICHauto has created the MICHauto Innovator Xchange, an immediate access point for startup companies to connect with well-established firms and other consumers of innovation. Learn more about participating startup, Grounded, and its founder Sam Shapiro below.

Meet Sam Shapiro, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Grounded

Shapiro is a technologist and entrepreneur who is leading the charge to an electric future for the RV industry.

Grounded’s mission is to create vehicles and technology that give people the freedom and self-reliance to live, work, and explore anywhere, sustainably integrated with nature.

Sam Shapiro Headshot

Before founding Grounded, Shapiro worked as a Senior Software Engineer at SpaceX, where he wrote embedded software for Starlink hardware. Prior to SpaceX, Sam was a Product Engineering Manager for TripleLift, where he incubated new product lines for the company before it was acquired by Vista Equity Partners for $1.4 billion.

Prior to this, Sam was a creative technologist for SpecialGuest, a Brooklyn creative agency, producing interactive software and installations for clients including Google, YouTube, NIO, and others. He was also a filmmaker, with his film RECOVERY premiering in the Big Apple Film Festival at East Village Cinema in NYC in 2015.

What Sam Has to Say About His Company

How long have you been in business and how many employees do you currently have?

We have been in business 18 months and have 6 employees.

Describe your ideal client and the problem you are trying to solve for them?

We are building smart, customizable, electric RVs. Our target customer are folks passionate about the outdoors and sustainability, looking for an improved, modern, and sustainable travel experience.

Where do you see your company in the next 5 years?

We are going to become a global outdoor technology brand with a portfolio of hardware products that make living and working in the outdoors more sustainable and will have built up an RV manufacturing industry within Detroit.

Why did you choose to locate your firm in Michigan?

The automotive and manufacturing talent and resources available in Michigan, and Detroit specifically, are unmatched elsewhere in the country and highly beneficial to the type of business we’re building.

What is your firm’s greatest competitive advantage?

World-class engineers who are moving very quickly to innovate in a decades-old industry that lacks innovation.