DRB-HICOM plans to aggresively start CKD operations following the announcement of the National Automotive Policy in order to capitalise on new opportunities and incentives that arise directly or indirectly through the new policy. DRB-HICOM’s company Suzuki Malaysia Automobile Sdn Bhd has already signed a contract with Suzuki Motors to assemble the Suzuki Swift as a CKD here, and is currently in talks with General Motors Asia Pacific to begin assembling certain Chevrolet models here in Malaysia. I would think the most likely models would be the Chevrolet Aveo and the Chevrolet Optra. However there was no timeline stated for the Chevrolet CKD operations.
DRB-HICOM is also undergoing a VSS (Voluntary Separation Scheme) exercise to cut down it’s workforce to something leaner. Currently it employs about 28,000 people and does not require that much to be operational, especially at the headquarters. The headquarters alone employs 340 employees and this is seen to be too much. It is offering 1.5 months salary compensation for every year served with the company. Rumours are that Datuk Abd Rashid Abd Rahim, group director services; Riduwan Shaari, chief executive officer of DRB-HICOM Defence Technologies Sdn Bhd, Datuk Mohd Nor Mohamad, senior group director of legal affairs and corporate governance, and Datuk Wan Ghaffar Ahmad, chief executive officer of Malaysian Trucks and Bus Sdn Bhd have tendered their resignations.
DRB-HICOM is also rumoured to be taking over AV Ventures Corp Bhd, a producer of automotive components listed on the second board.