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Abstract

This case is about James Dyson, a UK-based engineer and founder of Dyson Appliances Ltd (DAL), best known as the inventor of the bagless vacuum cleaner. With sales of over GBP514.7 million and a presence in 45 countries worldwide as of 2007, DAL had emerged as the market leader in the vacuum cleaner market in the UK as well as the USA. Analysts noted that Dyson's journey from launching the award-winning Ballbarrow (a gardening tool) in the 1970s to building one of the most successful multinational brands (ie, the vacuum cleaners that are called Dysons) in the 2000s had been anything but easy. There were plenty of challenging moments that punctuated his career, be it in the initial struggles to get funding for his venture or the patent litigation involving a major rival, which came much later. Despite all the problems, Dyson managed to build DAL into a market leader in a highly competitive industry dominated by multinational companies. While analysts hailed him as a great entrepreneur and praised his business acumen and approach towards innovation, Dyson also earned many laurels including receiving a knighthood for his services to the business world in December 2006. Experts felt that Dyson was not only a great inventor but had also shown sound business acumen which helped him build DAL from ground level into a global company. However, he was also criticised for shifting the company's production base to Malaysia in 2002. Union leaders alleged that this move had affected around 800 workers in the already waning manufacturing industry in the UK.

Teaching and learning

This item is suitable for postgraduate courses.
Location:
Size:
Medium
Other setting(s):
1978-2007

About

Abstract

This case is about James Dyson, a UK-based engineer and founder of Dyson Appliances Ltd (DAL), best known as the inventor of the bagless vacuum cleaner. With sales of over GBP514.7 million and a presence in 45 countries worldwide as of 2007, DAL had emerged as the market leader in the vacuum cleaner market in the UK as well as the USA. Analysts noted that Dyson's journey from launching the award-winning Ballbarrow (a gardening tool) in the 1970s to building one of the most successful multinational brands (ie, the vacuum cleaners that are called Dysons) in the 2000s had been anything but easy. There were plenty of challenging moments that punctuated his career, be it in the initial struggles to get funding for his venture or the patent litigation involving a major rival, which came much later. Despite all the problems, Dyson managed to build DAL into a market leader in a highly competitive industry dominated by multinational companies. While analysts hailed him as a great entrepreneur and praised his business acumen and approach towards innovation, Dyson also earned many laurels including receiving a knighthood for his services to the business world in December 2006. Experts felt that Dyson was not only a great inventor but had also shown sound business acumen which helped him build DAL from ground level into a global company. However, he was also criticised for shifting the company's production base to Malaysia in 2002. Union leaders alleged that this move had affected around 800 workers in the already waning manufacturing industry in the UK.

Teaching and learning

This item is suitable for postgraduate courses.

Settings

Location:
Size:
Medium
Other setting(s):
1978-2007

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