During a press conference following the signing of the definitive agreement of the Proton-Geely partnership, a question was raised if there would be any conflict of interest between Proton and Geely, given the brand positioning of both parties.

According to Zhejiang Geely chairman Li Shufu, this will not happen as both brands have different target markets. In the case of Proton, Li said the national carmaker is mainly relevant to Malaysia and South-East Asia, which Geely has no plans for its own plan. This negates any possibility of brand conflict.

Therefore, Geely plans to develop Proton into an ASEAN brand, and it will not have any brand presence here. He cited an example – where Proton is akin to Skoda, and Geely is Volkswagen. There’s plenty of synergy between the two brands even though both have different market positioning.

Li also noted that in the early stages, the first goal is for Proton to stop losing money and to turn its fortunes around. Only when the national carmaker has achieved a certain scale and strengthens its position in Malaysia, will there be the possibility for limitless future development and exports to other countries.

Geely is looking to tap into Proton’s experience in its over 30 years of existence, to help it develop right-hand drive models that are suitable for export. This is in line with Geely’s ambition for Proton’s Tanjung Malim plant to become its RHD production hub.

GALLERY: Geely Boyue in Malaysia