Following last week’s announcement about Dany Bahar being temporarily suspended, it seems that the rumour that Lotus will be sold has risen again. Proton has issued an official statement to confirm, yet again, that parent company DRB-Hicom will not be selling Lotus. So put that pen down and keep your cheque books away.
Proton’s executive chairman Datuk Seri Mohd Khamil Jamil visited the facilities in Hethel in Norfolk earlier this month, and held meetings with South Norfolk MP Richard Bacon and British Business Secretary Vince Cable. The outcome of the meeting saw the British Government agreeing to reactivate the £10 million Regional Growth Fund to support the boutique carmaker’s vehicle development plans in Norfolk.
Proton and DRB-Hicom will continue to review the current business plan and financial position of Lotus in the immediate- and medium-term. A team of local and international consultants is currently in Hethel to conduct an operations and legal audit on Lotus group of companies.
The review is needed in light of Lotus’ existing financial obligation of £270 million syndicated loan taken at the end of 2010, which Proton has given its corporate guarantee.
Lotus Cars is not the only sports cars company that DRB-Hicom is involved in. The Malaysian giant currently has a joint-venture with Potenza Sports Cars, the manufacturer of Westfield sports cars.