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SLIDESHOW: Q&A with Mirage founder Ken Fickett

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Ken Fickett got his start when his mentor — Miami builder Raleigh Stapleton — loaded a truck with mat, resin, acetone and catalyst, and told a young Fickett, “I don’t care where you take it, just go and start your own business.”

The directive was part altruism, part anger, but it set Fickett on a path that eventually led him to start Mirage Manufacturing, the Gainesville, Fla.-based builder of Great Harbour trawlers.

Since 1971, Fickett has designed everything from airplanes to open fishing boats to oceangoing trawlers, and he is currently working on a 74-foot trawler, as well as a new line of sportfishing boats.

In this slideshow, Fickett talks about launching a new line in hard times, the difference between airplanes and boats, and the business practice that helps him sleep at night.

To view this slideshow you will need Flash Player from Adobe.

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