Solar screens are not compulsory on board yachts but we've all heard stories of the effects of solar glare in terms of safety and possible damage to your eyes. Recognizing the potential market, Paul Pringle founded Solarglide in 2008, now supplying solar screens to some of the largest vessels afloat.
From generations of shipbuilders in the North East of England, Paul shares his take on the superyacht sector and what's new on the horizon.
What was your first job and how did you come to work in the maritime sector?
My first job (fresh out of university) was working for my father’s company ‘Martek Marine Ltd’ based in South Yorkshire. Martek Marine are a maritime safety and electronics company; I worked there for eight years in various positions including Production Manager, Blinds Manager and Service Manager.
The Maritime Sector runs in the family bloodline – my great grandfather and grandfather were shipbuilders; my father has worked in the sector all of his life, so it was a natural progression for me to follow in their footsteps. My little boy is also crazy about ships so the trend looks like it will continue for generations of ‘Pringles’ to come.
When did you start Solarglide and how did it come about?
I started Solarglide in February 2008 from my apartment in Leeds while working full time at a design agency. Having worked as Blinds Manager at Martek Marine I knew the product’s potential but I didn’t have the time to develop it further due to other work commitments. So after a year away from Martek Marine I decided to purchase this section of the business from them and the rest is history...