Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said that Proton should merge with another automotive maker to remain competitive especially in the overseas market.
Mergers are everywhere. The Daimler-Chrysler, General Motors and Ford Motor Company that you see today are actually the result of a series of mergers and buyouts. Ford owns Volvo, and the new Volvo S40/V50 shares the same platform as the Mazda3 and Ford Focus. Chevrolet managed to enter the Malaysian market again with car from it’s General Motors sister company Daewoo. Volkswagen bought out Skoda.
Proton bought Lotus, but looks like whatever’s come out of that is only the “tuned by Lotus” badges at the back of the Satria GTi and the Norwich football club sponsorship, which is where the Lotus headquarters is based.
There are benefits of Proton being involved in a merger. Look what Renault did to Nissan? Renault top man Carlos Ghosn totally took ailing Nissan the other way around to where it is today. A merger with a foreign automobile company could give Proton alot of help in terms of design and quality control issues. It could give Proton access to a wealth of experience. Look at Proton’s latest car the Proton Savvy. Even the wiper blade control is too far to reach when the driver’s hand is from the steering wheel. Isn’t this something kind of basic?
But I think national pride will get into the way of any possibility of a merger with Proton. Or is Husni talking about a merger between Proton and Perodua? Is Perodua giving too much heat to Proton? I think we can safely assume Perodua to be sort of like a Toyota company now. It has enough Toyota blood running in it.
Who to merge with? And first of all… is anyone interested?