Pindar’s business history

An artist impression of how the Pindar original building in St Thomas Street may have looked.
An artist impression of how the Pindar original building in St Thomas Street may have looked.

PINDAR is one of Scarborough’s most historic family businesses.

It was founded in 1836, when George Kyte Grice, a journeyman printer, established a business in the town.

In the late 19th century, the sales territory stretched as far as a horse could draw a wagon load of paper – around 20 miles.

In the early 1870s, George Arthur Pindar joined the company and subsequently bought the business from Mr Grice for just £500.

He became a pillar of the community in Scarborough, with two mayoral terms in the 1930s and 1940s. He was made Alderman in 1935 and a Freeman in 1957.

George Thomas Ventress Pindar joined the company in 1949 and took control of the business from his father in 1954.

He became a high profile figure within the industry and is recognised as being one of the principal pioneers of photo typesetting and computer-driven phototypesetting.

Tom Pindar, lifetime president, was awarded an OBE by the Queen in 1986 and became a Deputy Lieutenant of North Yorkshire in 1993.

Having revolutionised processes by introducing image and text databasing in the 1970s, the company’s next big technological leap was the adoption of desktop publishing in the late 1980s.

While much of the industry saw desktop publishing as a threat, it was seized upon by George Andrew Pindar, the present chairman.

He joined the company as a management trainee in 1979, subsequently holding a variety of positions before becoming chief executive in 1995 and chairman in 1997.

This period saw huge growth, as the company has expanded in the UK as well as overseas through its software business and in rapid response printing.

Today Pindar is the major shareholder of AlphaGraphics Inc, a world leader in rapid response print and visual communications services and a leading franchise operation in the US.

Pindar Set was an integral part of the Pindar Group until the business was sold to Yell. Since 1979 Pindar Set has been responsible for producing directories for Yell in the UK and more recently in Europe, US and India on behalf of the Yell Group.

Pindar was presented with Customer Service awards at the Print Week and British Printing Industries Federation awards in 2007 and 2008.