Nissan Renault Empire At Breaking Point As French Government Moves To Sack Carlos Ghosn
Imprisoned Renault boss, Carlos Ghosn, may finally be sacked from his role by the French government. Bruno Le Maire, the French Finance Minister, recently called for the dismissal of the Renault CEO during a television interview with French station LCI. When Ghosn was arrested on November 19, 2018, Nissan and Mitsubishi sacked him immediately.
Renault decided to use the principle of innocent until proven guilty. Which is why Ghosn survived as Renault CEO for so long. However what the French were effectively saying is that they do not trust the Japanese legal system.
The latter in and on itself is cause for diplomatic tensions between the French and Japanese governments.
The state of France owns a 15 percent stake in the alliance. Yet it enjoys a 43 percent majority voting stake.
Such a disparity in voting was a cause of mistrust between the two car makers. However, from the outside, the public was sold an image of peace and harmony.
And on the inside, according to the evidence amassed by Japanese prosecutors, Carlos Ghosn was using the Alliance’s corporate bank account to cover personal debts.
Nissan bosses were long concerned about the personal power Ghosn had accrued.
Prosecutors also discovered Ghosn paid himself an undeclared secondary income on top of his stated annual salary, worth up to $80m. And that is just the tip of his personal greed.
Ghosn’s failure to be released on bail during a recent court appearance has accelerated Renault’s decision to remove him as CEO.
Renault will meet in the next few days to formally end Ghosn’s tenure. They should have removed him immediately after he was arrested.
Renault is still committed to saving the Alliance. Mitsubishi may well be wanting to break away and escape to freedom.