James Dyson taps DBS banker Tan Su Shan to advise $21.4 billion empire

The addition of Ms Tan Su Shan is one of the most high-profile appointments for British inventor James Dyson’s holding company. PHOTO: DBS

LONDON – British inventor James Dyson has named one of Singapore’s top bankers as a director for his business empire’s holding company, adding to the roster of high-profile individuals from the city-state involved in overseeing his assets.

Ms Tan Su Shan, DBS Bank’s group head of institutional banking, was appointed late last year to Weybourne Holdings, which also counts Singapore Airlines’ (SIA) former chairman and a member of the country’s richest families as directors.

Weybourne oversees the British billionaire’s namesake maker of vacuum cleaners as well as his family office, whose investments span real estate, farming and venture capital.

The Singapore-based company has received more than £2 billion (S$3.2 billion) in dividends and capital transfers from Dyson Holdings since 2019, when the entrepreneur said he was relocating his technology firm’s headquarters to Singapore from Britain, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Ms Tan declined to comment, and a DBS spokesman referred questions to Weybourne. A representative for Dyson in Singapore declined to confirm Ms Tan’s role.

Mr Dyson is Britain’s richest person, with a net worth of US$15.9 billion (S$21.4 billion), according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, and has built up investments outside his namesake firm over the past decade.

The 75-year-old remains chief engineer of his technology business and opened its new headquarters in Singapore in 2022 alongside Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

The addition of Ms Tan is one of the most high-profile appointments for Mr Dyson’s holding company.

The Oxford University graduate joined DBS in 2010 after working at Morgan Stanley and Citigroup. She leads the biggest business group at South-east Asia’s largest lender after previously running its consumer banking and wealth management operations.

The head of Dyson’s family office, former British army officer James Bucknall, is listed as a Weybourne director along with Mr Koh Boon Hwee, the former chairman of SIA, who also serves on the investment board of sovereign wealth fund GIC.

Mr Kishin R.K., one of Singapore’s leading landlords with his father Raj Kumar, and Mr Andrew Lim, a partner at major law firm Allen & Gledhill, are directors of the holding company as well. BLOOMBERG

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.