This just in – General Motors plans to make a bid for a small stake in Proton Holdings Berhad as well as another stake in Proton’s manufacturing arm, reports NST’s Business Times quoting an unnamed industry source. Apparently this is a renewed proposal, one that was made by the car manufacturer giant to Proton way back in 1998, and it is a standalone bid, which means it is not a joint bid with a Malaysian company.
General Motors has a significant presence in Thailand, and was one of the companies that helped make it the Detroit of the East. Currently, GM’s partner in Malaysia is DRB-HICOM, which distributes Chevrolet-badged GM Daewoo cars in Malaysia through it’s unit Hicomobil. Previously there was news of GM conducting a due diligence audit on Hicomobil because it has plans to purchase a majority stake in it to be directly involved in the marque’s branding and distribution here.
Meanwhile, it looks like local conglomerates Sime Darby and DRB-HICOM are really really eager to get their foot in the Proton business one way or another, if not directly, then indirectly! The same article in Business Times reported that both Sime Darby and DRB-HICOM have met up with Volkswagen, presenting ways that they could work together if Volkswagen’s stake bid in Proton is approved.
In other Proton news, Tun Dr. Mahathir has been commenting on Proton again. This time he says Proton’s management needs to be changed to prevent the company from sliding into oblivion. For additional reading on what has happened so far, read the related posts below.
Government to announce Proton partner in March
DRB-HICOM explains 32.9% stake proposal rationale
Volkswagen conducting due diligence audit on Proton?
JMEPA: The reason Volkswagen wants Proton?
GM and DRB-HICOM to sign stake transfer MoU
DRB-HICOM says no official proposal from GM
GM potentially acquiring a 51% equity stake by October