John Braithwaite has announced his retirement from Sunseeker after 53 years with the iconic British boat manufacturer

Marking the end of an era, John Braithwaite will retire from Sunseeker in May 2018.

John started his career in 1964 at Friars Cliff Marine, which became Poole Powerboats in 1969 when it moved into the town of Poole and subsequently Sunseeker International in 1985.

Along with his brother, Robert Braithwaite, John has dedicated much of his life to the brand. John Braithwaite’s retirement in May has been timed to coincide with his 70th birthday.

On his retirement, John commented: “I feel immensely privileged to have been part of such an incredible brand and organisation. Since our early days, Robert and I have strived to deliver to our clients the most innovative and exciting products available.  That philosophy, together with strong, iconic design has been fundamental to our success and I know this will continue to be a driver for the talented design and development team I leave behind. I would like to thank them all for their dedication over the years.”

Sunseeker International has posted strong growth and confirmed order books were 91 percent full for 2018 earlier in the year.

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In a statement released by Sunseeker, the firm said John and Robert started with the desire to build ‘a new kind of boat’ at a time when there were no significant builders of boats for the sports and leisure markets in the UK. The statement continues: “From the launch of their first 17ft open-cockpit speedboat, to the development of the truly outstanding flagship 155 Yacht, John and his team of experienced designers and engineers have continued to set standards and break boundaries, and have truly spearheaded the industry of today – pioneering a whole new world of boating.”

Phil Popham, chief executive officer at Sunseeker International, said of the news: “There is no doubt that John is, and will remain, one of our industry icons. What he has achieved is truly momentous. John has always remained true to building the very best in pleasure craft, utilising the latest technologies and delivering every customer’s dream. John has been involved in designing some of our most renowned boats and on behalf of the whole Sunseeker family, I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for the huge contribution he has made to the brand and the industry. John will of course continue to be an important ambassador for us and I look forward to welcoming him back to Sunseeker events and celebrations in the future but in the meantime we would all like to wish him a very well-deserved retirement.”

Sunseeker unveiled its all-new Predator 50the smallest Predator ever made at Boot Düsseldorf in January along with the Predator 74.