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James Dyson - Profile


									James’s Story 1947 1965-66 1966-70 Born in Norfolk in the north of England Byam Shaw School of drawing and painting, Kensington, London Royal College of Art; furniture and interior design Design commissions include:  Peter Dominic wine shops with the Conran Design Group  Sea Truck with inventor Jeremy Fry. Sales to over 50 countries. Wins Design Council Award and 1975 Duke of Edinburgh‟s special prize Joins Rotork in Bath to start and manage the new Marine Division. Sales to 40 different countries. Appointed director in 1973 Strikes out on his own to develop the Ballbarrow and the Waterolla, water-filled plastic garden roller Invents the Trolleyball - a boat launcher with ball wheels Discovers the common failing of all vacuum cleaners – the bag Sells shares in the Ballbarrow for £10,000, uses the money to develop new vacuum cleaner technology Five years, 5000 prototypes results in Dyson Dual Cyclone™ technology Trawls the UK and Europe, looking for someone to license the product. The multinationals are reluctant to invest in the Dyson as it would terminate the bag replacement market, worth £100 million a year in the UK alone. Licenses idea to a US company. The licence is terminated later that year Begins to work alongside a company in Japan, which also imports Filofax The Japanese start to sell the first Dyson-designed vacuum cleaner, a post-modern pink machine, the G-Force. Becomes a status symbol, selling for $2000 The G-Force becomes a design classic, winning international awards. Commences lawsuit in the USA against a previous licensee for alleged patent infringement US lawsuit settled.


1974 1978

1979 1979-84 1982-84

1985 1986



Royalties enable James to set up Dyson Research and Development centre and factory in Chippenham, Wiltshire, UK May 93 DCO1, the first Dyson vacuum cleaner, sells in the UK, retailing at £200. Best-selling vacuum cleaner in the UK within 2 years Sends a petition to the European Court of Human Rights, appealing against the mandatory and exorbitant charges of patent renewal fees in the hope that the practice will be changed Becomes a trustee of the Design Museum, London, UK Elected Philanthropist of the Year for his work through the Dyson Antarctica Solo project for Breakthrough Breast Cancer James funds Dyson Centre for Design Education and Training at the Design Museum, London, UK Awarded a CBE in the New Year's Honours list by The Queen Presents the James Dyson Product Design Award at New Designers – an annual exhibition of product design final year degree projects Appointed Chairman of the Design Museum in London, following Sir Terence Conran, founder of the museum, who had held the position since 1992. (James Dyson chairman 1999-2004) James awarded Designer of the Decade Award. James introduces Dyson vacuum cleaners in the U.S., the world‟s biggest vacuum cleaner market James becomes member of IDSA (Industrial Designers Society of America) James Dyson and Jim Honey design a garden for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It wins a gold medal James Dyson is awarded Giant Of Design (G.O.D) at Annual House Beautiful Awards, USA James Dyson resigns as chairman of the Design Museum, UK – following concerns that focus has become styling rather than product design.

Jan. 97

June 97 July 97 Nov. 97 Jan. 98 July 98

Jan. 99

2000 Aug 2002

Aug 2002

May 2003

May 2004 Sept. 2004

Key speeches June 2003 Jan 2004 Dec 2004 MOMA annual design lecture series, San Francisco IDSA conference, Los Angeles James Dyson is the first engineer to give the prestigious Dimbleby Lecture, “Engineering the Difference”, for the BBC in 2004 (UK)

Company news Feb 1996 Dec. 99 Dec. 2001 March 2003 Dyson‟s Research and Development centre was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales (Prince Charles) Dyson RDD team announces it is working on a robotic vacuum cleaner Dyson‟s Research and Development centre was visited by Her Majesty The Queen Ten years since the launch of the first vacuum cleaner that doesn‟t lose suction – and Dyson‟s sales reach 10 million worldwide Announces transfer of floorcare production to Malaysia, enabling Dyson to invest heavily in research and development Dyson is the fastest growing vacuum cleaner in the USA and out-sells Hoover by value

April 2002 May 2004

Publishing May 1996 „Doing a Dyson‟ – James Dyson offers advice on how to invent new technology, manufacture and market it yourself. The construction of the book cover was designed by Dyson‟s RDD Department Autobiography 'Against the Odds' is published (also published French, German and Japanese) 1999 June 2000 Publication of „20th Century Design Icons selected by James Dyson‟ The Daily Telegraph newspaper (UK national broadsheet) publishes “James Dyson‟s History of Great Inventions” – a six part series in the Weekend Telegraph

May 97 in

Sept. 2001 April 2005

“James Dyson‟s History of Great Inventions” book launched in the UK Contemporary Design icons book – a selection of James‟s favourite designs (republished) University of Bath University of Staffordshire Oxford Brookes University Huddersfield University Business School Liverpool John Moores University Imperial College Bradford University University of West of England University of Middlesex University of Brunel Bath Spa University Royal College of Art Patron of Design and Technology Show Council Member of the Royal College of Art Member of the Design Council Former Chairman of the Design Museum in London (19992004) Trustee of the Roundhouse Theatre, London Commissioner for the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Patron of the National Association of Inspectors and Advisers in Design and Technology Member of the University Court, University of Bath Director of Imperial College, London Member of the board, Museum fur Angewandte Kunst (MAK) Vienna, Austria Member of Industrial Design Society of America

Honorary Doctorates

Positions held

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