Proton venturing into new business arenas; spotlight on Lifestyle and R3 Motorsports divisions

Proton venturing into new business arenas; spotlight on Lifestyle and R3 Motorsports divisions

KUALA LUMPUR: Proton continues to achieve record-breaking sales figures in domestic as well as export markets. The company’s financing arm, Proton Commerce, also achieved a new volume record in 2023. But that's not all, as Malaysia's national automotive brand is strategically broadening its business horizons to generate new revenue streams within the automotive ecosystem and beyond.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • How does Proton Global Services contribute to Proton's expansion?

    PGS, a subsidiary of Proton Edar, has become an integral part of Proton's business network, diversifying its operations into six major sectors - Lifestyle, Engineering, Training, New Energy, Logistics, and R3 Motorsports.
  • How has PGS's revenue grown?

    PGS has witnessed significant revenue growth, increasing exponentially from below RM1 million in 2021 to 19 times that by the end of 2023.
  • Notably, Proton Global Services (PGS), a subsidiary of Proton Edar, has quickly become an integral part of the company’s business network. Founded in 2021 with just a single F&B and merchandise outlet, PGS has diversified its operations to cover six major sectors: Lifestyle, Engineering, Training, New Energy, Logistics, and R3 Motorsports. 

    Proton venturing into new business arenas; spotlight on Lifestyle and R3 Motorsports divisions

    Under the leadership of CEO Lee Yeet Chuan, PGS has witnessed remarkable revenue growth, increasing exponentially from below RM1 million in 2021 to 19 times that at the end of 2023.

    The two sectors that are most visible to Proton buyers and fans are - the lifestyle and R3 Motorsports divisions. The Lifestyle division manages the Proton Café and the sale of Proton-branded merchandise. Meanwhile, the R3 Motorsports division is dedicated to developing high-performance versions of Proton vehicles and overseeing Proton's involvement in racing activities.

    Proton venturing into new business arenas; spotlight on Lifestyle and R3 Motorsports divisions

    Let’s have a brief look at these two businesses -

    Proton Café: Launched in 2021, it offers customers freshly brewed premium coffee and food items in a relaxed setting. To date, 16 outlets are operating at Proton dealerships, to expand to 25 outlets by 2025. In terms of merchandising, Proton branded merchandise has been available, but commercialization has now begun under PGS. There are a total of 20 merchandise partners nationwide and an online platform at protonmerchandise.com, where customers can purchase Proton and R3 branded products.

    Proton S70

    Proton R3 Motorsports: It is one of the most recognisable business divisions, which completed 20 years in 2023. To mark its 20th anniversary, the automaker launched the Proton X50 R3 20th Anniversary Edition last year. In 2024, it is planning to introduce the Proton S70 R3 racing car to participate in the Sepang 1,000 km (S1k) endurance race and increase sales for its high-performance R3 lubricants.

    “The retail business for PGS leverages on the strong enthusiasm Malaysians have for Proton. With so much history behind the company, we have an opportunity to build closer ties with Proton owners while offering them premium products and services. Our activities also indirectly reinforce Proton’s branding, and this is clearly seen via our R3 branded merchandise, lubricants and return to motorsports in the future,” said Lee Yeet Chuan.

    Lee Yeet Chuan

    In addition to exploring retail opportunities, PGS is also involved in projects within the brand’s ecosystem, generating additional revenue shared with Proton Edar. Examples include upgrading lighting at Proton’s casting plant and supplying furniture for department transfers to Proton Tanjung Malim. The New Energy division focuses on renewable energy initiatives to improve the company’s ESG rating, such as selling solar PV cells and collaborating on mobile EV charging concepts.

    “PROTON has been able to derive a number of benefits by forming Proton Global Services. From a costing point of view, the company is now able to better control operational costs while PGS retail operations allows us to leverage on the strength of our dealer network and brand image and maximise revenue opportunities from sales of merchandise, F&B and high-performance lubricants.

    PROTON

    “For the future, plans are in place to expand the use of renewable clean energy for PROTON and our vendors while work is currently ongoing between PGS and its engineering partners to develop energy storage and charging solutions critical for future Proton models. Added to initiatives to support training for automotive industry workers as well as a growing logistics presence, we envision PGS to continue to make consistent contributions to PROTON’s bottom line in the future,” said Roslan Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer, PROTON Edar.

    Also read: Proton and Uzbekistan ambassador explore joint automotive prospects

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