Nissan on ‘good path’ with profit recovery, EV investment plans, says COO
Nissan Motor company has been witnessing profit recovery and is electric-vehicle investment plans have placed the automaker on a good path towards future growth, the company's Chief Operating Officer Ashwani Gupta told Bloomberg.
Gupta's comments follow Nissan’s announcement last week that it will spend 2 trillion yen ($17.6 billion) over the next five years on electrifying more of its fleet. The company plans to have 23 new models by 2030 of which, 15 would be completely powered by battery.“Our operating profit is positive, and when we’re talking about electrification, this is meaningful," Gupta said.
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His remarks follow statements made the carmaker's former CEO Carlos Ghosn, who in an online briefing from Lebanon, said that the automotive industry is undergoing a monumental shift to battery-powered cars. He also questioned Nissan’s current management of being able to guide the company through the period of disruption. “The market is telling you that it is betting on companies that are moving toward totally electric. I don’t think Nissan management is well equipped for this," he said.
However, Gupta responded by underscoring the company’s financial recovery and the company's target of achieving 180 billion yen operating profit for the year through March. About electrification, he said, "We’re talking about doing 2 trillion yen of investment to launch 23 products. This is good enough in regard to sustainable growth for Nissan moving into the future."
Further, Nissan is allocating “production to profitable markets and markets where customers are waiting," Gupta said while responding to questions on output cuts due to the pandemic as well as the disruption of supplies of semiconductor chip and raw materials.
When asked if Nissan would see cuts similar to October’s 22% production drop, Gupta said, “I’m not sure about 22%, but it should be double digit."
(with inputs from Bloomberg)