Nissan to Sack Chairman Alleging Financial Misconduct

The arrest and imminent sacking of Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn is unlikely to deflect the automaker from either its ongoing EV strategy or its commitment to the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, industry pundits believe.

That’s because, while Ghosn was at the helm for the launch of the first Nissan Leaf in 2011, most automotive strategies are devised by committee unlike those often seen in digital industries where personalities can have a greater input.

Also France’s President Emmanuel Macron has intervened to pledge continued commitment by Renault, which is 15% owned by the state, to maintain the Alliance and its global cooperation.

Ghosn was sacked by Nissan after his arrest for alleged financial misconduct that, according to some Japanese media outlets, amounts to siphoning off up to $43M from the company since 2011. Nissan said it also planned to suspend senior executive Greg Kelly, claiming he had been “deeply involved” in the misconduct.

The alleged misconduct by Ghosn included under-reporting his pay package and personal use of company assets. Nissan said it was unable to give further details on the offences and Japanese prosecutors have yet to comment on his arrest.

“I feel despair, indignation and resentment,” said Nissan chief executive Hiroto Saikawa at a news conference. “As the details are disclosed I believe that people will feel the same way as I feel today.”

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