Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (Geely Holding) completed today the transaction to buy a majority stake in the British luxury sports brand Lotus.
Geely Holding owns now a majority stake of 51% in Lotus Advance Technologies Sdn Bhd (Lotus) with a minority 49% being held by Etika Automotive (Etika), a Malaysian automotive group.
The new board of directors is now formed by 3 Geely members and 2 assigned by Etika, which means that no occidental company is playing any role, at least directly in Lotus strategic decisions.
Will this be positive for the company? We’re not sure, anyhow and before we jump to conclusions, we shall remember that Volvo itself is owned by non-Swedish capital mainly controlled by Geely, and the company is succeeding not only in Europe but also in the US market, with attractive new models and state of the art technology built into the vehicles – just take a look at the new Volvo XC40 and you’ll see what we mean.
Mr. Daniel Donghui Li the new Lotus Chairman commented:
With the transaction completion we now look forward to working with our partners to develop the Lotus brand into a globally competitive brand and a well recognised leader in the sports car market. We are extremely confident that Lotus will go above and beyond the expectations of the automotive industry and consumer base in the near future.
Mr. Jean-Marc Gales, who joined the company in 2014, will continue in his role at Lotus as the Chief Executive Officer; he also stated:
Following a successful business turnaround, the Lotus brand has never been in a stronger position and we are now perfectly positioned for growth. We are producing the best cars in the company’s history and are currently developing next generation of sports luxury vehicles which will continue to demonstrate the Lotus brand values of class-leading vehicle dynamics, light weighting, styling and aerodynamics by leveraging Geely Holding’s global strengths and resources.
Let’s hope Geely acts the same way they did with Volvo and have great success in the market making Lotus big again; we don’t want to see any Lotus with “funny eyes”!