So long, Dyson electric vehicle.
"We have tried very hard..."
Dyson had hoped to emulate how Elon Musk's Tesla has taken on the world's big vehicle makers and managed to set the benchmark for electric cars.
Dyson, the British firm famous for bagless vacuum cleaners, posh hairdryers and the really powerful hand blowers in pub toilets, has cancelled its ambitious project to build a battery-powered family vehicle.
Dyson announced plans previous year to build the auto in Singapore as part of a NZ$5 billion investment in new technology globally.
CEO Jim Rowan told United Kingdom media that the move was not motivated by Brexit or tax, but was about future-proofing the company's business. According to Autocar, Dyson plans to see the investment through and continue to develop some of the technology, with an eye toward either incorporating it into other product lines or licensing it out. He also said Singapore will play an important role in Dyson's growth plans.
Dyson even tried to find a buyer for the project but failed to do so and eventually pulled the plug completely. Though Dyson attempted to find a buyer, those efforts proved unsuccessful, leading the closure of the project as a whole.
Prof David Bailey, of Aston Business School, said: "It never stacked up as a commercial proposition, it seemed more like a vanity project on his part". The internal email cited sufficient vacancies within the company for those who will now exit their roles on the auto team.
'This is a challenging time for our colleagues and I appreciate your understanding and sensitivity as we consult with those who are affected.
Chief engineer and company founder James Dyson announced the news in an update published to Dyson's website.
Mr Tan said the Singapore Government understands that Dyson has chosen to focus on growing its core home business, including new product categories, and on the development of its battery technology.
It is now working on finding alternative roles within the firm for the affected staff, and assures that there are sufficient vacancies to integrate them into its core home business. We will continue to expand at Malmesbury, Hullavington, Singapore and other global locations.
Dyson went on to note that those who can't or don't wish to find a new position within the company will be supported "fairly and with the respect deserved".
"Such an approach drives progress, but has never been an easy journey and the route to success is never linear", he said.
The statement also noted that the company would continue a £2.5 billion (RM13 billion) investment programme in "new technology", including the manufacture of new batteries, sensing technologies, vision systems, robotics, machine learning, and AI.
Up to 600 people were involved in the electric vehicle project, which was first announced in 2017.