Friday 20 September 2019

Mitsubishi says car alliance can survive

The logo of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance (Thibault Camus/AP)
The logo of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance (Thibault Camus/AP)

Maki Shiraki

A senior executive at Mitsubishi Motors said yesterday that its alliance with Nissan and Renault can survive management upheaval, a day after it fired Carlos Ghosn as chairman over financial misconduct allegations.

The future of the 19-year alliance, one of the biggest automotive groups in the world, has been thrown into doubt after the November 19 arrest and subsequent ousting of Mr Ghosn as chairman of both Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors.

Mr Ghosn (64) is the architect of the alliance and its chairman. He remains CEO and chairman of Renault.

Senior executives are due to meet for their regularly scheduled gathering this week in Amsterdam which sources said would start later today.

They are also expected to discuss Mr Ghosn's chairmanship of the alliance, a source at Nissan said. Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko said on Monday that he would join the meeting via video link, while Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa hasn't decided whether he will travel for the meeting, two company sources said. Nissan declined to comment.

A major longer-term focus is whether and how the ownership structure of the alliance might evolve, as Mr Ghosn, under pressure from the French government, had pushed for a deeper tie-up despite strong reservations at Nissan.

Renault holds around 43pc of Nissan, which in turn owns a controlling 34pc stake in Mitsubishi Motors. Nissan has a non-voting 15pc stake in Renault.


Irish Independent

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