talks with General Motors do not seem to be leading
to a concrete alliance, the Renault Nissan combine
may consider talks with Ford Motor. Talks between GM
and Renault - Nissan were initiated in July this year
and both sides would decide by mid-October whether to
form an alliance or drop such plans.
Ghosn, who heads both Renault and Nissan, indicated
yesterday that the combine would continue to seek a
North American partner if talks with GM fail. Ford is
the only possible partner as Daimler Chrysler, the other
major player in North America, would not be keen on
such an alliance. Ghosn was talking to the media after
his meeting with GM CEO Rick Wagoner at the Paris Motor
chairman William Ford Jr reportedly called Ghosn in
July to indicate Ford's interest in a partnership, if
talks with GM failed. There have also been media reports
about the two sides holding informal talks regarding
a possible alliance.
Motors is reportedly sceptical of the benefits of an
alliance as projected by Renault Nissan. GM has
had many such alliances across the globe with other
auto companies and the results were not very satisfactory.
Last year, GM had to end such an alliance with Fiat
at a considerable financial cost.
Nissan is apparently very keen on both sides
taking strategic stakes in each other to deepen the
proposed alliance. This is in line with their own holding
structure, where Renault holds a 44 per cent stake in
Nissan which in turn holds a 15 per cent stake in the
GM is reportedly keener on cooperation in specific product
lines as it is not in a position to make financial investments.
In fact, The Wall Street Journal had reported
this week that GM was demanding a sizeable amount from
Renault Nissan as GM believes it would bring
more value to a possible alliance.
GM and Ford are in deep trouble and have announced major
restructuring exercises involving plant shutdowns and
layoffs, the performance of Renault and Nissan have
also slipped recently.
is very keen on a major alliance to broaden the product
line-up and reduce costs by sharing development costs,
and vehicle platforms. However, some investors and analysts
are questioning the feasibility of such an alliance
as it would be too large to manage.