Published: Sat, January 26, 2019
Markets | By Erika Turner

Dyson to move headquarters out of Britain

Dyson to move headquarters out of Britain

Noting that half of its headcount comprised engineers and scientists, Dyson CEO Jim Rowan said in a statement Wednesday the company had made its "largest investment" in the United Kingdom as well as pushed its technology investments across the globe, particularly in Singapore.

Sir James, who owns 100% of the company and has built up a £9.5bn personal fortune, did not comment on the move.

Chief Executive Jim Rowan said the manufacturer of air purifiers, hairdryers and cleaner, lauded by politicians as a British success story, was a "global technology company", with 96 percent of its sales outside Britain.

He is also part of the executive team as company secretary.

Dyson is the latest company to mull changing operations amid Brexit uncertainty, with executives from Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan-Renault, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and others demanding that the government avoid a no-deal Brexit or moving operations overseas to other financial bases such as Frankfurt, Dublin, Paris, and Eastern Europe.

"An increasing majority of [our] customers and all of our manufacturing operations are now in Asia", the company said in a statement.

Still, despite Dyson's denials, there are hints that Brexit and its possible effect on the firm's supply chain is an accompanying factor behind the shift.

Dyson had already announced that production of its electric cars would move to Singapore back in October, when we were in the middle of negotiating with the European Union and still hopeful for some kind of miracle deal.

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Rowan said the company, which broke through the 1 billion pound ($1.3 billion) barrier for annual profit in 2018, was moving to be near its manufacturing centres and the markets where it was seeing the biggest demand.

Dyson announced past year that he will be manufacturing their new electric cars from Singapore, and not the UK.

The company stopped manufacturing its products in Britain in 2003 but most of its designed work takes place at Dyson's main research and development facility in Malmesbury, Wiltshire.

Still, that did not stop people on Twitter from suggesting that the move was hypocritical and contradicted claims by James Dyson, the company's founder and chairman, that the country would be better off outside the EU.

Revenue at Dyson reached 4.4 billion pounds ($5.7 billion) for the year ended December 31, up 28 percent, boosted by demand for new hair products.

This latest announcement comes after Dyson revealed a year ago that it would build its new electric cars in Singapore.

Dyson aims to bring a total of three electric cars to market, including the first model in 2021.

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