From building robots in the basement to putting algorithms on the moon

Monday, June 6, 2022
Matt Rendall

Written by Rose Simone. This is an excerpt from an article originally published on Waterloo Magazine.

About 13 years ago, Matt Rendall and three friends from Mechatronics Engineering at the University of Waterloo started building robots. It was an interest that grew from their involvement in UW Robotics Team and then carried on into their final-year engineering project, which became an idea for a company.

In 2009, Matt completed his Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology degree where he gained critical skills to develop his business model while leveraging the support of programs that make up Waterloo’s vibrant startup ecosystem.

"There are professors who are entrepreneurially minded and tend to gravitate to Waterloo because they want to focus on their innovations. The graduate students who work for them will also be entrepreneurially minded and the undergraduate students are also exposed to that mindset throughout their education."

Matt Rendall (BASc ’08, MBET ’09)

From those humble beginnings, Clearpath became a multi-million-dollar global enterprise that now employs 320 people and has customers in at least 50 countries.

The Canadian Space Agency recently announced plans to send a robotic lunar rover to the moon in 2026. In that project, Brampton-based MDA, developer of the Canadarm, is working with Clearpath Robotics to develop the software that will drive the rover on the moon. “We have a long history in aerospace. This project that we just announced is continuing to build on that heritage.”

Read the full story on the Waterloo Magazine.