A good year for Dyson: Profits up and robots in the pipeline

 
Sarah Spickernell
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Robotic hoovers could soon replace the hand-held ones we are used to (Source: Getty)
The improving global economy and an increase in exports to China combined to push up Dyson's underlying profits by 5 per cent to £382m in 2013.
An increase in popularity of its cordless vacuum cleaners also had a positive impact, raising turnover to £1.3bn from £1.2 in 2012.
And it doesn't stop there - more commonly known for its traditional, hand-held hoovers, Dyson is now embarking on designing a robotic option in anticipation of a wider trend.
“If you take a 10-year view I think the world will largely have shifted to autonomous machines and stick machines,” said chief executive Max Conze.
Called the 360 Eye, the new product has already attracted pre-orders from more than 70,000 people in 190 countries, according to Dyson.
Dyson is currently working with a number of universities to develop new technologies, according to The Telegraph, and has just announced a £250m investment in its Malmesbury Campus.
The intention is to launch robotic vacuum cleaners first in Japan, where the brand is already the country's most popular and there is a widely-established robot market – the biggest in the world, in fact. Conze hopes to launch them there next year.
He also recognises an untapped potential for robotic devices in the UK. “The UK is still a very underdeveloped robot market, where you need a machine that works on hard floor and on carpet,” he said.
Here's the 360 Eye at work:

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