The world woke up today to the news that chairman and chief executive officer of the alliance between Renault SA, Mitsubishi Motors Corp. and Nissan Motor Co., Carlos Ghosn, has been arrested at Tokyo, Japan, over “significant acts of misconduct,”.
The scandal involving the high-profile executive, echoed across the world, making Renault’s stock in Paris to fell more than 10%, their lowest in the last four years.
Nissan Representative Director Greg Kelly has also been arrested as a consequence of the internal investigation made by the Japanese automaker.
According to the statement released by Nissan, “The investigation showed that over many years both Ghosn and Kelly have been reporting compensation amounts in the Tokyo Stock Exchange securities report that were less than the actual amount, in order to reduce the disclosed amount of Carlos Ghosn’s compensation.
“Also, in regards to Ghosn, numerous other significant acts of misconduct have been uncovered, such as personal use of company assets, and Kelly’s deep involvement has also been confirmed.
“Nissan has been providing information to the Japanese Public Prosecutors Office and has been fully cooperating with their investigation. We will continue to do so.”
In 2001 Gosh became Nissan President and since then he´s known for saving Nissan from bankruptcy with his management style.
He´s also responsible and chairman of the three-way carmaking alliance, Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Motors, the world’s largest auto seller in 2018.
In April, 64-year-old Carlos Gosh stepped down as Nissan CEO, former co-CEO, Hiroto Saikawa succeeded him.
“As Nissan’s chairman, I will continue to supervise and guide the company, both independently and within the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance,”
“This planned change will also allow me to devote more time and energy to managing strategic and operational evolution and expansion of the Alliance and ensuring that all its members benefit from the competitive advantages that its scale will deliver,” Gosh said at the time.
Only a week ago, French President, Emmanuel Macron visited Renault’s Maubeuge plant with the presence of longtime (2005) Renault´s CEO and chairman, Carlos Gosh.
The French government is a major shareholder in Renault, and currently holds a 43.4% stake in the Japanese company.
Monday – Yokohama – Japan
At a news conference held in the company headquarters in Yokohama, Nissan CEO, Hiroto Saikawa stated: “We cannot go into details today, but we have confirmed that this matter is totally unacceptable as a company.”
“We are deeply sorry and regret the betrayal of trust of various related people, shareholders, and suppliers who have supported us for many years because Ghosn was leading Nissan,” he said.
“It’s very difficult to express this in words. “Beyond being sorry, I feel big disappointment and frustration and despair and indignation and resentment.”
The news has raised questions on the future of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance, to this moment, neither executives have made any comment on such allegations, but after the news conference held by Nissan, both executives, Carlos Ghosn, and Greg Kelly, are expected to be relieved from their respective positions on Thursday.
Tueaday – Boulogne-Billancourt – France
Meanwhile, Renault’s lead independent Director and committee chairs, Philippe Lagayette, made a press release today: “As lead independent director of Renault, in liaison with Board Committee Chairs Marie-Annick Darmaillac and Patrick Thomas, have acknowledged the contents of Nissan’s press release of today.”
“Pending provision of precise information from Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Renault, the above directors wish to express their dedication to the defense of Renault’s interest in the Alliance. The Board of Directors of Renault will be convened very shortly,” he added.