Geely to invest US$ 1.9 billion for Lotus revamp

11 Août, 2018, 14:30 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • The investment plan is part of Billionaire Li Shufu’s grand vision to take Geely to the forefront of the auto industry rivalling Toyota Motor Corp and Volkswagen AG. — Handout via AFP

Geely chairman Li Shufu plans to use this expansion as a part of a strategy to make his group compete with Toyota and the Volkswagen Group worldwide.

Zhejiang Geely is considering an investment push in Lotus Cars, and it sounds significant, the sum being bandied being to the tune of US$1.9 billion (RM7.75 billion), Bloomberg reports.

China's Zhejiang Geely Holding Group is prepared to invest the necessary funds to make Lotus into a world-beating luxury and sports auto brand.

"Geely is fully committed to restoring Lotus into being a leading global luxury brand", the automaker said in an email, declining to comment further.

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Sources familiar with those considering the deal reportedly told Bloomberg that the investment would involve bringing in 200 engineers destined for Lotus's existing factory in Hethel, Norfolk. More specifically, Bloomberg's sources claim that Geely wants to open a second factory in the United Kingdom, followed by a new design and tech center, also in the UK. Li's group acquired Volvo in 2010 and spent more than $11 billion to modernize its factories and help turn around the Swedish brand.

Li emerged to be the biggest shareholder in German luxury-car maker Daimler AG with an nearly 10% stake. Two months ago, Geely had committed to a new United Kingdom design studio in Coventry, Geely said in its email. Sources close to the plans said Geely is in talks with its Malaysian partner Etika Automotive Sdn Bhd.to purchase more than the 51-percent stake in Lotus it now holds as well.

Last year, Geely acquired a majority stake in Lotus and 49.9% shares of Proton. The transformation at Volvo at the hands of Geely bodes well for whatever fate awaits Lotus.

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