Piper Aircraft, Inc. is a general aviation aircraft manufacturer located in Vero Beach, Florida. The company was originally called the Taylor Brothers Aircraft Manufacturing Company but was renamed after William T. Piper purchased the company in 1937. In December 2011, Piper came under the direct ownership of the government of the Brunei Ministry of Finance.
Remaining a privately held company, Piper Aircraft has met over $160 million in yearly revenues. The company has produced over 140,000 aircraft in 160 certified models, out of the 140,000 only 90,000 are still in operation. As a general aviation aircraft manufacturer, Piper Aircraft, Inc. produces smaller sized airplanes. The largest aircraft the company ever produced was the the Piper Cheyenne 400 which is a turboprop aircraft with a length of only 43.4 ft and a wing span of 47.7 ft. The company's current models are the Meridian, Mirage, Matrix, Seneca V, Seminole, Arrow, Archer, and Archer DX. These small 4-6 seat aircraft are used for general, commercial, and business use. Although their current fleet consists of small general-use aircraft, Piper Aircraft, Inc. used to produce many military versions. In the 1940's, throughout World War II, Piper produced military versions of its J-3 Cub as the L-4 Grasshopper.
During this time, 5,941 powered aircraft were produced by Piper Aircraft, Inc. for the US Armed Forces. The company was also contracted to produce training gliders, aircraft components, and steel masts for radar antennas. In the 1950's, Piper Aircraft, Inc. once again won large contracts for military versions of the J-3 Cub due to the Korean War. This time instead of producing the L-4 Grasshopper, the company created the PA-23 Apache for the military to use.
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