17 March 2012

Datuk Seri Mohd Nadzmi left Proton

Proton has announced the resignation of Datuk Seri Mohd Nadzmi, the Chairman of Proton. This is interpreted as one of the terms and condition in the DRB-Hicom takeover, as Nadzmi is the chairman appointed by the former owner of Proton. According to Managing Director of DRB-Hicom, Datuk Seri Mohd Khamil Jamil, the new management line-up will be announced within two weeks, and set to comprise both old and new faces.

As it stands now, DRB-Hicom owns 50.1% of Proton, not 42.7% as announced during the bid. This is because DRB has bought some 7.27% of Proton's shares from the public market. Due to the amount of shares it owns, DRB-Hicom is obliged to make a mandatory general offer to the other shareholders, in turns will increased the DRB-Hicom shares in Proton by even larger margin. If the remaining open market share falls below 25%, Bursa might even consider to delisted Proton from the board, bringing it to full privatisation. Perhaps it would be good if Proton is privately own, because at the moment every Malaysian (even the insignificant one) thinks they have some rights in Proton and tends to condemn the product as if it was grown in their backyard!

On the other hand, OSK research (from Business Times) quoted as saying that they have observed DRB-Hicom is seriously active in transforming Proton. Cost-cutting initiatives was said to be paramount, together with vendor rationalisation program. However MMN tends to be sceptical with this kind of "general statement- standard to any transformation upon takeover program" because we know that Proton has, in 2008, indeed rationalise the vendor for the car components. Contract were awarded to a few Tier-1 vendor, which in turns will distribute the production contract to smaller supplier. This way, single point of responsibility can be singled out to one vendor, reducing the "pening kepala" in managing all sorts of design and quality issues that may arises throughout the car lifecycle (from development right to the decommissioning).

But, the question is now, who will launch the P3-21A?

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