“This does not change any of our investment or recruitment plans,” said Rowan. The company currently employs 5853 engineers across the UK and Asia, and Rowan says the engineering centres in Bristol, Malmesbury, Hullavington Airfield and London will continue to lead on technology development. The Bristol centre has a focus on the Internet of Things (IoT).
One driver for the move is the proposed electric car business that will be based in Malaysia. While R&D and testing of the new electric car and batteries will be at the £550m site at Hullavington in Wiltshire, the manufacturing will be in Singapore for a launch in 2020 run by a senior executive from Japanese car maker Nissan.
The company has started its second intake of students for the Dyson Institute of Engineering and Technology in Malmesbury, with 40% of the 25-strong course being women, compared to an average of 15% for UK engineering courses.
The news of the move came as the company announced profits of £1.1bn, up 33% on last year on turnover of £4.4bn, up 28%.
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