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Carlos Ghosn is responsible for all the ills of Renault?

Since the announcement by the manufacturer of the removal of 15 000 jobs, of which 4600 in France, many point to the responsibility of its former CEO. Is right

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Carlos Ghosn is responsible for all the ills of Renault?

Since the announcement by the manufacturer of the removal of 15 000 jobs, of which 4600 in France, many point to the responsibility of its former CEO. Is right or wrong ?

No / The current leadership has been too slow to respond to the reversal of the market

By Bernard Jullien

The plan "Drive the Future", launched by Carlos Ghosn in 2017, is gladly presented by the current leadership, as a heresy, which would have committed the company in a suicidal "race to the volumes". First, let us remember that during his first years at the head of Renault, Ghosn has rather been obsessed by the operating margin (the famous 6% of 2006). Then, that those who criticize him today to have been too ambitious for the manufacturer to the diamond, have long accused of not being enough, or for its ally Nissan and not Renault.

Finally, and most importantly, let us remember that the plan "Drive the Future" was designed in another time : we were in the second half of 2017 and the years that came to pass had been for the world market and for Renault years rather lucky. It was so wet on the growth of the automotive sector, at the same time attempting to preserve or grow the market share of the group's brands, in Europe and, especially, outside Europe : the idea was to accelerate in India, Russia, South America and start to take foot in China.

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Clotilde Delbos, the current interim executive director, then financial director, was also presented, at the time, the project shareholders with a high level of confidence. It is only in the course of the year 2018 is that over time, the plan appeared problematic, as the markets begin to show significant signs of weakness. In this, more than the plan itself, it is the governance of Renault who appears to be in question.

where there should have been a review quick and deep marks and lines, as well as the industrial tool manufacturer, in order to redefine a plan 2019-2022, and Carlos Ghosn or the directions which it was surrounded would not see the obvious. Too busy to obey and not to make waves as long as they were under his guardianship, and then to manage the crisis that opened to his arrest then, the successive directions had rather too long to practice a policy of the ostrich. In June 2020, the ostrich is finally soaring, but Renault has lost at least eighteen months, and finds himself forced to present a restructuring plan to be very heavy.

Bernard Jullien, a lecturer in economics at the university of Bordeaux, a specialist in the automotive industry, a former director of the Gerpisa.

Yes / in Addition to the problems of overcapacity, he has left a crack in the alliance

By Patrick Pélata

Renault is now paying a high price for the race to the volumes initiated by Carlos Ghosn. In order to take the objectives of the plan "Drive the future" of 2017, the teams had to "push" the vehicles on the market thus degrading the value of the brands. This is true for Renault in Europe, but even more important for Nissan in the United States. But the former CEO has also left to decay in the relations within the Alliance Renault-Nissan. The tensions, loss of time and energy had started well before his arrest. It was, in recent years, less and less urgent to maintain a healthy search and respectful of synergies between the two partners.

Ghosn has also left Renault to lose senior managers from Nissan, as well as those who were familiar with the two companies. Where misunderstandings, mistrust, and less and less of actual collaborations. It has also left Thierry Bolloré (the former DG of Renault revoked last October, editor's NOTE) and remove all those who could make him shade. When he was still there, Carlos Ghosn in exfiltrait some at Nissan, but as soon as Bolloré has had a free hand, he pushed it towards the exit. Renault has lost Thierry Koskas, director of sales, Arnaud de boeuf, director-general of the Alliance, Beatrice Foucher, the former patron saint of electric cars, or even Alain Raposo boss of the engineering of the engine of Nissan and Renault, all parties in the PSA, as well as dozens of talents of high level.

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The Japanese say that companies, like fish, rot from the head. Ghosn, who knew, yet to do otherwise, was incredibly disengaged from Renault in recent years, and has left this process to operate. Everything accelerated after his arrest and until the foreclosure property late of Thierry Bolloré. But very little has been repaired since. The current leadership -which was eventually slightly modified - has its share of responsibility. Why the current chairman, Jean-Dominique Senard, has he not renewed in depth with a board of directors that Ghosn had done to his hand ? Why have you waited so long to address the overcapacity of production ? Why are so many other problems, major, are not always put on the table ? By intervening earlier, the damage would, no doubt, été less cumbersome.

Read our complete file

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Patrick Pélata, former director general of the Renault group, today a consultant and director of several companies.

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