Head of Renault fired to save the alliance with NissanOctober 13, 2019
Thierry Bollore, who led the French company after last year’s scandalous resignation of Carlos Ghosn, was dismissed himself due to insufficient zeal in the field of restoring a constructive relationship with Nissan. A successor has not yet been found.
This week, Nissan, which crashed into the crisis, finally found a new leader, Makoto Usida, but Renault seems to be just starting to ferment. Rumors about the overthrow of Thierry Bollore appeared in the French newspapers on the third day, and today they are fully confirmed: the board of directors of Groupe Renault voted for the resignation of Bollore, Clotilda Delbos, financial director of the company, was appointed interim CEO.
What did not please Bollore? The fact is that at one time, Bollore was the right hand of Carlos Ghosn, very painfully took the dismissal of the cartridge and subsequently did not seek to establish relations with Nissan, which were spoiled after Ghosn’s complete merger of Nissan and Renault failed. Relations between the alliance members reached a boiling point in May this year, when the French company tried to merge with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and thus clearly showed a disinterest in maintaining the alliance with Nissan. The deal fell through due to the intervention of the French government, the main shareholder of Groupe Renault, which, in order to avoid international scandal, stood up for Nissan and forced Renault to take into account the interests of the Japanese side when planning its future life.
Thierry Bollore expressed only a formal interest in rebuilding the alliance, but did not take any concrete steps, and the French Finance Ministry was rumored to press on the chairman of the board of directors Jean-Dominique Senard, demanding an early normalization of relations with Nissan. The cold war between Renault and Nissan led to the freezing of joint development and the disruption of the schedule for updating the lineup – this was one of the reasons for the sharp deterioration in Nissan’s financial performance and threatened the same in the near future Renault.
Jean-Dominic Senard, after the appointment of Usida as the head of Nissan, was forced to push the resignation of Bollore, as the Nissan directors and French officials began to lose patience, which threatened the resignation of Senard himself. He denies pressure on himself, but the sudden dismissal of Bollore is one of the signs of manual leadership. Bollore, according to Reuters, called his resignation a coup.
One way or another, but with the departure of Bollore, the era of Carlos Gon can be considered finally completed, at the top of the alliance, his proteges are no longer left. Whether this purge will help save the alliance, time will tell, and a lot will depend on who will now stand at the helm of the Groupe Renault. Given all that has happened, it will be difficult to find a responsible boss, because, in fact, he will have to coordinate every step with the French government, and such a bureaucratic leadership is unlikely to be effective. The best thing the government could do now is to sell its shares in Renault and let the company live its own life, but it seems that it is not ready to go on it yet.
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