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When Makoto Uchida starts his new job
as chief executive of Nissan on the 1st of December hopes
are high that it will be the start
of a new era for the troubled Japanese carmaker.
With instalment of a younger slate of top managers,
Nissan will aim to put behind it 12 months of internal turmoil,
profit collapse, and tensions with its French partner
Renault, that were triggered by the arrest
of its former chairman Carlos Ghosn a year ago.
But the challenges the new 53-year-old boss faces
are enormous.
The Japanese group recently issued a profit warning,
saying it now expects its annual net profit to fall 66 per cent
from a year earlier.
Sales were weaker than expected in all of its core markets.
Analysts predict that one of the first jobs Mr Uchida, who
headed Nissan's China business, will have to focus on
is a new round of restructuring to stem
a sharp decline in profits.
Already, Nissan has said it would cut 12,500 jobs globally
and reduce the number of models it produces by 10 per cent.
Another urgent task is to repair the relationship
with Nissan's long-time alliance partner, Renault,
that was badly shaken after Mr Ghosn was arrested
on charges of financial misconduct, which
the former boss denies.
The struggling French carmaker is also
in the process of finding a new chief executive after it too
ousted its former boss in October.
With a new management team in both France and Japan,
the two companies will aim to revive the alliance
as they seek to survive a massive disruption
coming via electric vehicles, autonomous driving,
and ride sharing.
The interests are aligned more than ever,
but Mr Uchida will need to strike a delicate balance
between Nissan's internal interests
and the structural interests to make the alliance sustainable.
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Nissan-Renault: Why the new CEO needs to repair the relationship | FT

3 Folder Collection
林宜悉 published on March 20, 2020
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