The Edge Financial Daily reported today that Proton Holdings Bhd is well on its way to being delisted from Bursa Malaysia after new owners DHB-Hicom had secured over 90% equity interest through its takeover offer. As of 5pm yesterday, DRB-Hicom owns 90.02% stake in Proton as announced by the company’s advisers Maybank Investment Bank Bhd and Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd.

DRB-Hicom now has the freedom of restructuring Proton without the need to answer to the minority shareholders. There is also speculation that Proton’s Shah Alam plant will integrate its operations with those of Tanjung Malim. Consequently, the land in Shah Alam will be sold or redeveloped.

The report continues to note that the privatisation of Proton will create a sizable automotive entity that would rival the Perodua-Toyota Malaysia alliance that lists Toyota Japan, Permodalan Nasional Bhd and Daihatsu Japan as its key shareholders. The shockwaves of DRB-Hicom’s move will send tremors to certain parts vendors; DRB-Hicom is known to have an extensive automotive parts manufacturing business and it might be sourcing parts from its own backyard.

When asked about the fate of Lotus Group, DRB-Hicom was quick to put the stopper on the rumour mill. The conglomerate also renounced the knowledge that Lotus would be sold to Youngman or be put under administration. As of now, DRB-Hicom is still supporting Lotus Group financially and management-wise.

Read the full report here: http://www.theedgemalaysia.com/highlights/212366-drb-hicom-on-track-to-delist-proton.html