30/Aug/2014 - Last News Update: 08:00

Car maker Lotus in talks on sale to China, MP reveals

Category: England

Published: 24th Apr 2012 22:45:57

The owners of sports car maker Lotus, which employs 1,200 staff, are in talks with a Chinese firm about a possible sale, an MP has revealed.

Richard Bacon MP has raised concerns a sale of the Norfolk-based firm could lead to jobs being moved to China.

Mr Bacon, South Norfolk MP, told the House of Commons consultancy firm KPMG "has been appointed with a mandate" to sell Group Lotus to the Chinese.

Lotus, which is owned by Proton, part of DRB-Hicom, has not commented.

Mr Bacon told the Commons it was "not an encouraging sign" and he was concerned at the "potential threat which exists to 1,200 local jobs".

His comments appear to contradict an earlier statement from Malaysian group DRB-Hircom, which said it had not decided to sell Lotus Group.

In a statement, it said it was still supporting Lotus Group "both financially and management-wise".

"As of today, DRB-Hicom has identified one of Proton's senior management personnel to take up a position in Lotus Group in an effort to strengthen its management," it said.

In his speech to the Commons, Mr Bacon said Prime Minister David Cameron spoke to the head of Proton, Dato' Sri Syed Zainal, during his recent trip to Malaysia.

Hours after that meeting, the head of Proton was "in China seeking a buyer for Group Lotus", Mr Bacon added.

"This has naturally caused immense worry and concern for the 1,200 employees at Group Lotus," he said.

"And it is unnecessary, because there are well-capitalised potential buyers of Group Lotus with a credible plan to keep the business and the jobs in the UK."

He add that one Chinese business, China Youngman, has had a commercial relationship with Lotus for many years.

Source:
BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Car maker Lotus in talks on sale to China, MP reveals [Online] (Updated 24th Apr 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1424374/Car-maker-Lotus-in-talks-on-sale-to-China-MP-reveals [Accessed 30th Aug 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Lesotho army 'seizes key buildings'

    Soldiers in the southern African kingdom of Lesotho have seized the police headquarters and surrounded a key government building, officials say.
  • Victorian Strangeness: The pig singing competition

    Cheer/groan (delete according to mindset): The X Factor is back. Author Jeremy Clay tells the story of the show's Victorian forebear, where the hopefuls had to sing while carrying a pig.
  • Cwmbwrla Ambulance Station conditions criticised by watchdog

    The condition of a Swansea ambulance station has been criticised by a patient watchdog after an inspection.
  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • Call for more data on Scottish disabled children

    A charity campaigner has called for better information on the number of Scottish children with a disability.
  • East Anglia's World War Two airfields photo project begins

    An appeal has been made for photographs of East Anglian airfields used by the United States Air Force as part of a project to record their history.