Proton (Proton Holdings Berhad) today announced the appointment of Jean-Marc Gales as the new CEO (Chief Executive Officer) of Group Lotus PLC, effective 1st May 2014. Lotus is a completely owned subsidiary of Proton and a member of the DRB-HICOM Group.
Gales, a Luxembourgian, holds an MSc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Karlsruhe in Germany and an MSc in Management from London’s Imperial College.
A known industry player, Gales has held several significant positions with a number of international automotive manufacturing companies. Prior to his new appointment at Lotus, Gales was Chief Executive Officer of the European Association of Automotive Suppliers (“CLEPA”) since 2012, where he played a key role in turning around the association through various strategic initiatives, including rationalizing the working processes and increasing corporate members from 82 to 112. Gales also established a lobbying strategy with the European Commission and European Parliament, and helped define the Industry Research & Innovation Strategy and Roadmap for 2025.
Before joining CLEPA, Gales was the President of Automobiles Peugeot and Automobiles Citroen between 2009 and 2012, where he restructured the entire sales value chain and implemented a new brand strategy for the DS Line and launched the Citroen DS in major markets around the globe. During his tenure there, the Company delivered record retail sales in 2009 and 2010.
Gales’ other previous appointments include several senior positions in General Motors, Volkswagen AG and Daimler AG.
Aslam Farikullah, current Chief Operating Officer of Group Lotus PLC, remains as Member of the Board of Lotus Cars Limited and will continue to contribute to the growth of the business in the future.
Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer at Proton, is pleased to welcome Gales to the Group. “This is an exciting time for Lotus, and Jean-Marc’s appointment couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time, especially taking into account our plans for Lotus. We believe that with his strong managerial and technical technological leadership and expertise, Jean-Marc Gales will be able to drive the Lotus transformation plan and further improve Lotus’ capabilities and business.”
Jean-Marc Gales is married and has one daughter.