Malaysia-listed glove maker Careplus has diversified its existing business to include the business of electric vehicles (EV).

Careplus said in a statement on Thursday that it has undertaken a joint venture with Malaysia-based EV firm Go Auto to import electric vehicles under the Neta brand, by taking up a 30 percent stake in Intro Synergy Sdn Bhd (ISSB), a wholly owned subsidiary of Go Auto through a share swap.

Careplus has also undertaken a joint venture with Go Auto in setting up a manufacturing and assembly hub for new energy vehicles through a newco named NexV Manufacturing Sdn Bhd (NMSB) with a 51 percent stake and the balance of 49 percent by Go Auto.

NMSB will have an assembling capacity of 30,000 units per year in its first phase.

Neta will take up 10,000 units while the balance will be opened to other interested parties.

According to statement, the firms have received decision letters from Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI) in Malaysia, approving their manufacturing license with the standard conditions to comply with department of environment and local authority.

It is noted that the firms plan to begin assembling by the end of 2024.

They will start by assembling up to 10,000 NETA cars as the capacity of the facility stands at 30,000 units a year.

It is also noted that there are other brands which are interested to join them as they need a facility for completely knocked down (CKD) manufacturing.

“We will invite them to partner with us. Our aim is that we manufacture up to 30,000 units before going on to the second and third phases,” the statement said.

According to the statement, the capital expenditure (capex) requirement for the two buildings will be approximately MYR230 million ($48 million).

Careplus said it expects to fund MYR 60 million ($12.53 million) to MYR 70 million ($14.62 million) internally, while the balance will come from bank borrowings.

Careplus said the firm has plan to develop a Careplus Mall into an auto city, in which “anything related to auto or new energy” will be made a part of it.

It said its flagship NETA showroom will be at the Careplus Mall which will have high speed charging stations for EVs, to be installed by Gentari, a clean energy unit under Petronas.

It is noted that Careplus Mall will complement the auto side of businesses with a variety of food & beverage outlets, badminton courts, a TVET training academy and other suitable businesses or activities.

On September 4, Careplus had entered into agreements in relation to the proposed ISSB joint venture which involves the purchase of 300,000 shares in ISSB equivalent to a 30 percent equity stake in ISSB.

The deal will be satisfied by way of a share swap via the issuance and allotment of the 2.5 million new ordinary shares in Careplus valued at MYR 6 million ($1.25 million).

The principal objective of ISSB is to undertake the EV distributorship in connection with the EV manufactured under the “NETA” brand whereby ISSB will import certain models of NETA EV for distribution in Malaysia, on an exclusive basis.

ISSB has also been appointed as the sole and exclusive distributor for certain models of NETA EV for the territory of Malaysia.

Careplus is a public listed company in Malaysia, headed by Chief Executive Oficer Lim Kwee Shyan.

Go Auto is a 100 percent bumiputra, privately owned company headed by SM Azli SM Nasimuddin Kamal, who is currently Chief Executive Officer of ISSB.

He will be appointed to head NMSB as Chairman of Board of Directors.

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