SINGAPORE: British technology firm Dyson, known for its vacuum cleaners and bladeless fans, opened a new £330 million (S$587 million) research and development centre at Singapore's Science Park on Monday (Feb 13).
The facility will focus on developing new technologies for the future, including artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, fluid dynamics and vision systems.
It will house the Global Technology Centre of Excellence, which will lead downstream research and development for new product categories and Internet of Things technologies to support the firm's move into the smart homes market.
Dyson's founder and chief engineer James Dyson said engineers at the new facility will work on bringing hardware, electronics and software together.
"The software is propelling hardware companies at a faster rate than software is propelling software companies. The power comes from the two working together,” he said. “Dyson is focusing on developing intelligent technology and making products which know and anticipate what you want before you do. Machine learning gives our products the intelligence to understand and react to the environment."
Speaking at the launch, Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry) S Iswaran said Singapore will continue to work with industry partners to support innovation and internationalisation.
"These efforts will better position our enterprises to seize opportunities in growth sectors such as advanced manufacturing and the digital economy, as well as create good job opportunities for our people,” said Mr Iswaran.
Dyson, which currently employs 1,100 people in Singapore, said it plans to grow its Singapore-based engineering team by 50 per cent. It is seeking talent across a broad range of engineering disciplines, including connectivity, motors, sensors, robotics and software. The new centre will create an additional 190 jobs over the next five years.
Sir Dyson also met Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and showed him some of the company's latest products. Said Mr Lee after their meeting: "Dyson is one of many companies offering engineers good opportunities. I hope Singaporean engineers will rise to the challenge, and create remarkable technologies that improve our lives."