Sir James Dyson, the famously pro-Brexit head of his eponymous hoover company, has announced that the company will be moving its headquarters to Singapore.
Dyson had already announced that production of its electric cars would move to Singapore back in October, when we were in the middle of negotiating with the EU and still hopeful for some kind of miracle deal. Now, the company has announced its HQ will be moving over there in its entirety, including its execs and big cheeses, and legal incorporation. Sir James himself will reportedly divide his time between Southeast Asia and the UK.
It's hard not to see the move as a little hypocritical given Sir Dyson's insistent comments about the UK's ability to withstand a no-deal Brexit, but chief exec Jim Rowan has denied it's anything to do with leaving the EU. It's about future-proofing the business, he says. Which begs the question – if Brexit isn't going to ruin us, why can't the future be bright here?
Sir James still owns 100% of the company himself, but the decision was apparently taken alongside the executive team. How much say anyone gets when one person holds all the cards is questionable, though.
Brilliantly, when The Guardian asked if Dyson could still be described as "a great British success story" as David Cameron called it in 2014, Rowan replied that it should now be known as "a global technology company." Which is pretty telling of the company's stance on its Britishness.
Lib Dem MP Layla Moran was blistering in her response:
"This is staggering hypocrisy for Brexit-backing businessman James Dyson. It is utterly unbelievable that the business face of Brexit is moving yet another part of his business out of the UK.
James Dyson can say whatever he wants but he is ditching Britain. This can only be seen as a vote of no confidence in the idea of Brexit Britain."
Is there anyone left who thinks this country will be a good place to live after we go over the cliff? Answers in the comments, no doubt.
Main image: raneko via Flickr CC