James Dyson: The Engineer Entrepreneur
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Entrepreneurship/ Identifying opportunity/ Innovation
This case is about James Dyson (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 £514.7 million and a presence in 45
countries worldwide as of 2007, DAL had emerged as the market leader in the
vacuum cleaner market in 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 (i.e. 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
While analysts hailed him as a great entrepreneur and praised
his business acumen and approach towards innovation, Dyson also
earned many laurels including receiving the knighthood for his
services to the business world on 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 the ground
up to a global company. However, he was also criticized 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.
» Understand the personality traits of an entrepreneur from the life and
work of James Dyson.
» Identify the benefits and challenges faced by an entrepreneurial
venture with regard to managing its business growth and sustaining its
» Understand the leadership and management style of James Dyson and his
contribution to the success of Dyson Appliances Ltd.
» Appreciate the sources of inspiration for an entrepreneur in the
consumer appliances industry.
James Dyson, Entrepreneur, Dyson Appliances Ltd., Innovation,
Bagless vacuum cleaner, Market leader, Global expansion, Innovation, Dyson
School of Design Innovation, Design, Off-shoring, Technological advantage,
Marketing, Advertising, Public relations, Publicity, Intellectual property
right, Risk taking, Hoover, Competition
UK's Greatest Entrepreneur?
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