Despite understanding the potential benefits brought on by the proposed merger between Renault and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Nissan chooses to remain noncommittal until it can make sure that its interests are protected.
That was the message communicated by the company’s CEO Hiroto Saikawa in his first official statement regarding the merger. He also knows that working with FCA could “expand the playing field for collaboration and create new opportunities for further synergies.”
Yet, he also feels that Nissan needs to look out for itself before fully supporting the tie up between the two European automakers, as reported by Autonews Europe.
“From the standpoint of protecting Nissan’s interests, Nissan will analyze and consider its existing contractual relationships and how we should operate business in the future,” stated the brand’s CEO, who also cautioned that a full Renault-FCA merger would “significantly alter” the structure of its 20-year alliance with the former.
So to go ahead with merger talks would also require a “fundamental review” of the ties between Renault and Nissan.
FCA’s initial proposal was for a 50-50 split between themselves and Renault, without directly addressing the French automaker’s existing alliance with Nissan and Mitsubishi – although the Japanese brands weren’t excluded from the plan.
Currently, Renault owns a 43% stake in Nissan, whereas the latter holds only a 15% stake in Renault with no voting rights. However, FCA’s proposal would give Nissan a seat on the new holding company’s board, plus a 7.5% stake with voting rights.