Jean-Marc Gales_CEO of Group Lotus plc and Aslam Farikullah 01_05_14_20p (3)

Jean-Marc Gales and Aslam Farikullah

Just two days after Datuk Abdul Harith Abdullah was announced as Proton’s new chief executive officer, the company has now made official the appointment of Jean-Marc Gales as Group Lotus’ new CEO, who assumed position effective yesterday, May 1. The post had been vacant since Dany Bahar was dismissed from the company in 2012.

Gales, a 51-year-old from Luxembourg, joins Lotus from the European Association of Automotive Suppliers (CLEPA), where he had been CEO since 2012. There, he was credited with turning the association around, initiating a lobbying strategy with the European Parliament and the European Commission as well as helping to define the Industry Research & Innovation Strategy and Roadmap for 2025.

Prior to CLEPA, he was made president of both Automobiles Peugeot and Automobiles Citroen in 2009, where he restructured the entire sales value chain and pushed a new brand strategy for Citroen’s DS line. During his tenure, the company delivered record retail sales in 2009 and 2010. Gales also previously held senior posts at Daimler, General Motors, Fiat and Volkswagen.


Dany Bahar was the previous Group Lotus CEO before being sacked in 2012

Gales holds a Master’s degree in management from the Imperial College in London, as well as a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Karlsruhe in Germany.

Aslam Farikullah, who had been running the company as chief operating officer since the Bahar sacking, remains a member of the board of Lotus Cars.

Harith welcomed Gales to the Group, saying, “This is an exciting time for Lotus, and Jean-Marc’s appointment could not have come at a more appropriate time, especially taking into account our plans for Lotus. We believe that with his strong technical and managerial expertise and leadership, Jean-Marc will be able to drive the Lotus transformation plan and further enhance Lotus’ business and capabilities.”