PROTON Holdings Berhad lately announced its financial results for the 3rd quarter ended 31 December, 2008. And it seems that they suffer from the economical crisis. I already saw their drastic action to close down many of their branch and showroom and i think this is a good way of reducing cost during the economical crisis.
The group reported a loss before tax of RM61 million for the 3rd quarter compared to a profit of RM11 million in the corresponding quarter last year.
Chairman Dato’ Mohd. Nadzmi Mohd. Salleh attributed the Group’s losses to the contraction of vehicles sales as buyers turned cautious as a result of the financial and economic crisis.
“PROTON’s domestic sales volume declined by 15% compared to the immediate preceding quarter. Correspondingly, the Group’s revenue for the quarter declined to RM1.5 billion from RM1.8 billion in the preceding quarter mainly due to lower sales volume,” said Dato’ Mohd. Nadzmi.
“The losses in the Q3 were further compounded by the higher foreign currency exchange rates, particularly the Japanese Yen and USD. Additionally the group has also incurred higher raw material and component costs,” he said.
Despite the weaker performance in Q3, the Group posted a cumulative profit before tax of RM54 million for the nine-month period of this financial year (FY08/09) compared to losses of RM31 million in the corresponding period last year.
Dato’ Mohd. Nadzmi said this improvement in profitability was due to profits recorded in the first half of the financial year arising mainly from PROTON’s increased domestic sales volume, better margins and lower discounts.
Revenue for the nine-month period in FY08/09 grew to RM5.1billion compared to RM3.9 billion in the same period last year. For the nine-month period under review, the Group sold a total of 122,355 units of cars compared to 99,039 units in the same period last year.
Managing Director Dato’ Haji Syed Zainal Abidin bin Syed Mohamed Tahir said the Malaysian automotive industry is expected to face increasingly challenging conditions due to the ongoing global financial and economic crisis.
“To face these challenges, the Group will intensify its efforts to strengthen the distribution network and increase domestic market share by investing in product refreshers and new models,” said Dato’ Syed Zainal.
Dato’ Syed Zainal said PROTON would also step up its effort to boost export particularly in the key markets identified under its Asian Multi-local OEM Strategy. “PROTON has made further inroads into the Middle East and other regional markets during the period and will strengthen its marketing efforts in those markets in the future,” said Dato’ Syed Zainal.
As for the local market, PROTON is optimistic about the prospect of the new PROTON Exora – a homegrown Multi-purpose Vehicle (MPV), which will be launched in mid-April. “The public has reacted well to the new MPV.Since booking was opened on 21 February. So far we have received firm bookings for more than 800 units,” he said.
The seven-seater MPV, priced below RM80,000 will come in five exciting colours i.e. Genetic Silver, Tranquility Black, Blue Haze, Pyrite Brown and Gaia Blue.