China’s Geely Automobile Holdings has withdrawn its bid for a 51% controlling stake in national automaker Proton, according to Geely president An Conghui, who was quoted by the South China Morning Post.
Whilst Mr An did not elaborate further on the decision, his statement confirms earlier reports that quoted Geely chairman Li Shufu as having already planned an exit from talks, citing DRB-Hicom’s indecisiveness in negotiations as a reason.
“They keep changing [their minds], today it’s this, tomorrow it’s that,” Li told Bloomberg.
Before withdrawing from talks, Geely had reportedly offered its D-segment GC9 and Boyue five-seater SUV models to Proton in addition to technology in small car engineering co-developed with Volvo.
Geely’s withdrawal leaves the door clear for an aggressively-expanding PSA Group, which recently acquired Opel from General Motors and also officially confirmed having submitted a bid for the national carmaker.
Early in February, DRB-Hicom revealed that bidders for Proton had completed their due diligence of the company’s books and that a decision will be made within the first half of this year.