Billionaire Dyson's return to UK residency: Company says S'pore will remain its global HQ

An artist’s impression of the interior of St James Power Station, where Dyson is planning to open its new global head office. PHOTO: DYSON

SINGAPORE - Billionaire James Dyson has switched his residency back to Britain but Singapore will remain his firm's global headquarters and the centre of its sales, engineering and manufacturing operations.

Mr Dyson, who bought a good class bungalow in Cluny Road in 2019 for $50 million, now primarily lives in Britain, according to filings for firms he controls, including his family office Weybourne, it was reported on Wednesday.

A company spokesman told The Straits Times on Thursday (April 22) that it does not comment on private family issues, such as residency and tax, but added: "Nothing has changed. The structure of the group and the business rationale underpinning it are unaltered.

"Singapore is, and remains, the global headquarters of Dyson, our leadership team is based here and it is the centre of our sales, engineering and manufacturing operations. We continue to expand our investments in Singapore."

The spokesman added that the firm is looking forward moving into its 110,000 sq ft global headquarters at St James Power Station "as soon as renovations are complete", which is believed to be by the end of the year.

Apart from housing Dyson's global headquarters, Singapore is a hub for its engineering teams and its commercial, advanced manufacturing and supply chain operations.

The company told ST on Thursday that its plans in Singapore remain unchanged, and that it will hire 250 additional engineers in Singapore over the next five years, doubling the size of its software and electronics engineering teams.

This is part of its planned £2.75 billion (S$5.09 billion) global investment in future technology.

Dyson already employs about 1,400 people here, of whom nearly half are engineers and scientists. There are also currently 115 available roles in Singapore listed on the Dyson Careers site.

The hirings will support its ambitions to enter new fields, and develop a new generation of high-performing technology products with increasing intelligence.

"We will also retain the Singapore Technology Centre at Science Park 1 as a key centre for Dyson's digital, engineering and cyber-security efforts, which will more than double our footprint in the country," the company spokesman said.

Company filings show that Mr Dyson, 73, is a director of three business entities here - Dyson Holdings, Weybourne Holdings and Weybourne Nominees Singapore.

ST understands that his residency change does not affect his office holdings because all three entities have other directors, of which at least one is a local resident.

Mr James Dyson now primarily lives in Britain, according to filings for firms he controls. PHOTO: DYSON

The Economic Development Board and the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore declined comment, while the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority cited confidentiality reasons with regards to Mr Dyson's Singapore Permanent Resident status.

Asked if there will be any retrenchments at Dyson's operations in Singapore, the spokesman said: "The world is changing quickly and fundamentally and that is changing the nature of the roles we need for our future.

"As we increasingly sell our products direct to our owners and also adapt our manufacturing approaches, the roles we require will change too. Nonetheless, Singapore continues to be at the centre of our sales, engineering and manufacturing operations."

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