Nothing like conjecture to get the share prices moving. Last week, it was reported that shares of Geely Automobile soared to record levels following the report that the Chinese automaker was leading the race to become Proton’s foreign partner.

Now, the same is happening with DRB-Hicom. According to The Star, the Malaysian corporation’s shares climbed to their highest in more than two months, and were among the top shares traded yesterday. It finished the day at RM1.27, trading as high as RM1.30 just before closing, StarBiz reported.

According to an analyst, investors are seeking to accumulate positions in DRB-Hicom ahead of Proton’s announcement of its partner, which the automaker says it aims to name by April.

Geely – which owns Volvo, the London Taxi Company and sub-brand Lynk & Co – is competing for a stake in Proton against Europe’s second-largest carmaker, Groupe PSA. Both companies are reportedly undertaking due diligence work actively at Proton’s headquarters, but sources familiar with the matter said that Geely seems to be showing more interest.

Both are eyeing a 51% majority stake in Proton’s manufacturing plant in Tanjung Malim. The government has given the green light for a foreign company to own a majority stake in the assembly plant.

If Geely is successful in its bid, securing the deal will add 150,000 units of annual capacity to its output and give the Chinese carmaker a fast-track access to Asean’s 10-member market and its 623 million-strong population.