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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

28-01-2009: Proton's China sales appear to be on track

PETALING JAYA: Proton Holdings Bhd is estimated to have supplied at least 13,000 units of its GEN.2 cars to China's Jianhua Youngman Automobile Manufacturing Co Ltd since the end of 2007 to be re-badged and sold under the Europestar brand in the country.

OSK Research Sdn Bhd's analyst Ahmad Maghfur Usman said this was based on the information given by the national carmaker, adding that on the higher end of the scale it could have supplied up to 17,000 cars.

"Based on the agreement between the two that a minimum 30,000 cars will be supplied over two years, Proton appears to be on track.

"Although the contribution from this to Proton's revenue stream should be quite stable, Proton however has not shared much more details with us (analysts)," he said.

Efforts by The Edge Financial Daily to obtain further details from Proton came to naught, as the national carmaker seemingly preferred not to pre-empt its third-quarter (3Q) results announcement due next month.

Proton in July 2007 announced that its unit Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd would supply 30,000 completely-built-up cars to Youngman to be re-badged.

At the same time the company, through its 55%-owned Proton Parts Centre Sdn Bhd agreed to supply genuine service parts to Youngman.

It also said Youngman would have access to engineering and development consultancy services from Proton via its subsidiaries in the Lotus group of companies, for the development of complete-knocked-down (CKD) cars for Youngman in China.

Ikmal Hafizi of TA Securities Research, like Ahmad Maghfur, said the Proton management kept details of its dealings with Youngman close to their chest.

"They are very cautious as to what they want to share with analysts these days," he said.

Meanwhile, commenting on the government's call for Proton to expedite the design of the so-called "Malaysian taxi", Ahmad Maghfur said there were still many issues to be considered by the national carmaker before embarking on the project.

"At the outset, Proton can quite easily do minor facelift and interior shaping for a taxi as it is just a question of making changes to the body, and the engine is not in issue as its existing technology is sufficient.

"What remains to be seen is whether the government would provide any incentive for local cabbies to buy such a vehicle. It would be tough to get all taxis converted to a new design without incentives as many taxi drivers are still maintaining their Proton Iswara models," he said.

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Friday, January 02, 2009

31-12-2008: Nadzmi returns to Proton as chairman

KUALA LUMPUR: Proton Holdings Bhd has appointed Nadicorp Holdings Sdn Bhd executive chairman Datuk Nadzmi Mohd Salleh as the national carmaker’s new chairman with effect from tomorrow, replacing Datuk Mohd Azlan Hashim.

In a statement yesterday, Proton said Nadzmi was no stranger to the group, having served as deputy managing director of Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd from Nov 2, 1992 and then as MD from 1993 to 1996.

Nadzmi had also held various senior positions in Edaran Otomobil Nasional Bhd, including as executive director and chief executive officer. He is now a director of several companies, including Ranhill Utilities Bhd, JT International Bhd, VS Industry Bhd and Kumpulan Kenderaan Malaysia Bhd (KKMB), which is the major shareholder of bus company Konsortium Transnasional Bhd (KTB), formerly Park May Bhd. Nadzmi is the chairman and managing director of KTB.

Nadzmi, via KKMB, holds a 40.3% indirect stake in KTB after the recent disposal of a 22% stake comprising 65 million shares on Dec 1. He also holds a small direct stake of 1.3%, or 3.92 million shares, in KTB.

Nadzmi was also appointed director and deputy chairman of Proton’s subsidiary and distribution arm Proton Edar Sdn Bhd from Sept 22, 2005. He is currently the president of the Badminton Association of Malaysia.

“Although there remains a lot to be done, Proton today is undoubtedly on a better foundation to move forward and better compete with other automotive companies,” Azlan said at a Proton board of directors’ meeting yesterday.

Azlan, 51, has been with Proton since December 2004 and is resigning as chairman and director. He was appointed a director on Dec 17, 2004 and assumed the position of chairman on Feb 7, 2005.

Azlan added that Proton’s progress had been made possible by the strong support of the government, its shareholders, the wider automotive community including component vendors and dealers, directors, management and staff.

Azlan, an accountant by training, is now a major shareholder of Silk Holdings Bhd or SILK (formerly Sunway Infrastructure Bhd), with a deemed interest of 36.16% comprising 65.09 million shares in the expressway concessionaire, which has proposed a regularisation scheme to put itself on a better financial footing.

SILK owns Sistem Lingkaran-Lebuhraya Kajang Sdn Bhd, the concessionaire that operates the Kajang traffic dispersal ring road in Selangor. Azlan and his business partner Johan Zainuddin Dzulkifli bought the SILK stake from the latter’s bondholders for RM11.1 million cash or 17 sen per share.

SILK was traded unchanged at 18 sen while Proton rose two sen to RM1.85 yesterday. KTB was untraded at 22 sen.


What is the main factor for you to buy a Proton Car?
Low price and no other choice due to budget
Good resale value
Low maintenance cost
Ride & Handling is good
Reliable parts, chasis and engine
Good Styling exterior & Interior
Patriotism (I support Made in Malaysia Products)
Follow others (Follow Majorities should be the best choice)