Proton New Energy Technology Sdn Bhd (PRO-NET), a wholly owned subsidiary of Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd (Proton), announced Thursday it has obtained MYR 200 million ($42.19 million) in financing from CIMB Bank Berhad (CIMB) for the funding of its green mobility initiative and the import and distribution of the smart #1 premium electric vehicles (EV) in Malaysia.

PRO-NET said in a statement that the firm is the exclusive authorized importer and distributor for smart vehicles in Malaysia and Thailand.

The smart #1 is the first model sold by PRO-NET and is built on Geely’s Sustainable Electric Architecture (SEA) and styled by Mercedes-Benz.

With a comprehensive ecosystem spanning 13 dealer locations, aftersales services, as well as a user-friendly digital app known as ‘Hello smart’ to provide access to over 70 percent of the public charging network, PRO-NET offers a holistic electric mobility solution together with the reassurance of a robust customer service plan.

The company is also charged with fulfilling national carmaker PROTON’s commitment to its electric vehicle agenda and is set to play a pivotal role as it leads the transition towards the production of New Energy Vehicles (NEV) and the development of the Automotive High Tech Valley (AHTV) in Tanjong Malim.

“We will utilise this financing to enhance our digital ecosystem and supply chain in EV infrastructure and expand our network for a seamless retail experience,

“This will facilitate the rising demand for electric vehicles, aligning with Malaysia’s carbon neutrality objective,” said Roslan Abdullah, Board Member of PRO-NET.

According to him, the funding not only accelerates the firm’s growth but also reinforces customer confidence and facilitates the transition toward increased adoption of electric vehicles.

“CIMB’s recognition of market opportunities and their proactive approach to support our expansion initiatives exemplify the kind of partnership we value at PRO-NET,

“We express our gratitude to CIMB for the opportunities afforded to PRO-NET and PROTON in expanding our offerings and providing a diverse selection of EV models to meet the evolving needs of our customers,” he added.

Novan Amirudin, Co-CEO of Group Wholesale Banking, CIMB Group, said they are honoured to support PRO-NET in advancing its green mobility initiative.

“The transaction underscores CIMB’s commitment in supporting clients across diverse industries to advance their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) agendas and fostering positive impacts through sustainable finance solutions,

“This aligns with CIMB Group’s ambition to become a leading focused ASEAN bank and sustainability leader in the region, as outlined in our Forward23+ strategic plan,” he added.

According to the statement, CIMB provides an array of solutions for the consumer EV segment with the introduction of its comprehensive suite of EV financial solutions to drive the adoption of EVs and support the shift towards sustainable mobility across ASEAN.

These include preferential auto financing rates, insurance protection and a range of other exclusive privileges, facilitating consumer needs across every aspect of owning an EV.

As a purpose-driven financial intermediary, CIMB Group said it is continuously stepping up on sustainability innovation to achieve its sustainable finance target of RM100 billion by 2024 under the group’s Green, Social, Sustainable Impact Products and Services (GSSIPS) Framework.

Incorporated in August 2022, PRO-NET’s business scope encompasses the distribution of new energy vehicles, provision of EV charging solutions, electronic parts and mobility solutions, finance and insurance services, retailing of accessories and merchandise, monitoring data services for customers as well as the latest technology in EV design and manufacturing.

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