Subsea UK Says Final Goodbye to Its Inaugural CEO

Subsea UK inaugural chief executive, David Pridden (66), passed away last weekend following a battle with cancer.

David Pridden became the CEO of Subsea UK in 2004, several months after the organisation was formed by Government and the industry.

Pridden was latterly chairman of Seanamic Group, chair of the Trustees of the UK’s National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth and a member of the Simmons Private Equity Investment Committee.

After studying mechanical engineering at Manchester’s Salford University he went straight into the offshore industry, joining Y-ARD in Glasgow, then worked on the Shell/Esso underwater manifold centre at Vickers Offshore.

He worked for BP from 1977 for five years before moving back to the contracting sector for five years in Norway, latterly as managing director of Kongsberg Subsea Developments.

At this point he, together with three others, launched front-end subsea designer Mentor Engineering Consultants. By 1992, Mentor had grown to a £10 million revenue group and was sold to McDermott.

In 1997 he returned to Manchester and took up the role of chief executive of UMITEK which invested in consulting businesses to the energy sector. These included Capcis and Smith Rea.

Pridden added TNEI and other renewables businesses to the stable before selling the oil and gas interests to Intertek and the renewables side to Petrofac in 2010.

He was appointed chief executive of Subsea UK in June 2004, a position he held for five years.

Bill Edgar, chairman of Subsea UK, said: “I had the privilege to work with David in the early days of Subsea UK. He was passionate about the subsea industry and promoting the UK’s world-leading expertise in this field. The initial strategy and initiatives he rolled out at Subsea UK laid the foundations from which the organisation has grown to become the highly successful, self-sustaining one it is today.

“He was also committed to promoting the industry to young people and had the ability to spot and employ competent young engineers into senior positions with identifiable management potential.

“He is a huge loss to our industry and will be sadly missed. “

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