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by Matt Brogan

Proton chairman Datuk Mohd Nadzmi Salleh told Malaysian press this week that there is potential for a management buyout of the country’s national car maker.

Mr Mohd Nadzmi said Proton had struggled to maintain it’s domestic market share and produce new models, but that he is willing to assist management with a buyout plan believing the company is financially strong and able to succeed.

“We are not like a lame duck wanting somebody to carry us and I believe that we must use our strength to collaborate with other parties,” said Mr Mohd Nadzmi. “The impression that Proton is dying and needs a partner, is not the case.”

The rumour of a possible buyout saw Proton’s shares more than double. Malaysian billionaire Syed Mokhtar Al Bukhary and Proton’s former executive director Kisai Rahmat are both thought to be interested in the company, the latter discussing joining forces with distributor Naza Group.

Germany’s Volkswagen AG have also had past dealings with the Malaysian manufacturer though talks with the Malaysian government fell through.

This year Proton is expected to sign an agreement to manufacture small cars with India’s Hero Group. The deal is expected to be complete by year’s end.




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