Meet Ash! Head of marketing at Melon Optics, a sunglasses and goggles company based in Bali. He's recently returned to the UK and is our newest PLATF9RM member to date!
So Ash, welcome to PLATF9RM. Can you give us the lowdown on Melon Optics and what role you play?
Melon optics was started in 2014 by a guy called James when he came up with the idea of custom eyewear. He started it whilst he was on a ski season in France then he moved to Indonesia and set the brand up there because it’s cheap to live and he loves the lifestyle there; he’s a big surfer. So he started with sunglasses and ski goggles, selling them online directly to the consumer. Then I joined 18 months ago, so there’s three of us in the business day to day, the other guys are in Bali most of the year. I am back in the UK but I spent the majority of the last 18 months out there.
What made you want to move from Sunny Bali to Brighton and how are you finding it?
I moved here about 6 weeks ago. I love Brighton, it’s great! It feels like home already.
I spent 7 months in Bali the first year and 3 months the second year and as wonderful as it is, it’s a very small place. You get up, get on your scooter, it’s too hot to do anything, you go to work. You can surf and do yoga and eat great food. Outside of that there’s not all that much. I missed the outdoors, I missed my mountain bike, I missed the hills, I missed the pubs, I missed music. I never thought I’d say ‘I miss the UK’ but I did in many respects miss the culture here. I am lucky enough to get the beauty of spending a month out there, a month in the alps and then the rest of my time here.
What do you like about PLATF9RM and how are you finding it?
I’ve actually worked from co-working spaces in Bali and I never got connected with them, I couldn’t get into it. Don’t know what it was. It felt really friendly and open here and I like that people aren’t trying to show off too much.
I’m not exactly famous for reaching out to people and talking to them. But people here seem wonderful, really friendly and lovely but I’ve not really made the most of that yet!
Have you been to any PLATF9RM day events yet and did you enjoy our 2nd birthday party?
Not yet, I love the sound of Cereal Fillers and will definitely go to the next one. The 2nd birthday party was great!
I get the impression you love to travel. Where’s your favourite place in the world?
I really enjoyed Australia, I’ve only done holidays there. Melbourne is really cool. I like Canada; the winter sports side cause I’m a snowboarder. I haven’t been to as many places as you might think! Mainly in Europe, I like Ireland.
How do you recharge? Have you managed to brace the icey Brighton waters for a surf yet?
I haven’t been in yet. I was planning to and then it got really cold. I have surfed down here before but I need to fetch my surfboard. I went in the sea in Margate recently, that’s a really cool place.
If you could only watch one film for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
I like stupid films. I really like Old School because I love Will Ferrel. Films that don’t take themselves too seriously are my favourite.
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