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Thursday, 21 June, 2001, 12:24 GMT 13:24 UK
Ghosn tightens Nissan grip
Nissan chief executive Carlos Ghosn
Carlos Ghosn, sent in by Renault to Nissan
Carlos Ghosn, the man sent by French car maker Renault to restore the fortunes of Nissan, has been appointed chief executive of the Japanese company.

Mr Ghosn, nicknamed "Le Cost Killer" after implementing massive cost cuts, was previously chief operating officer and president of Nissan.

His latest promotion dampened speculation about a possible return to Renault, which owns 37% of Nissan.

"I am staying at Nissan as long as it will be necessary to reposition the company on track for lasting economic revival," Mr Ghosn told a meeting of Nissan shareholders in Tokyo.

Nissan said the appointment showed its resolve to "forge ahead" with its revival plan under Mr Ghosn.

Return to profit

Last month, the company reported an annual net profit of 331bn yen ($2.7bn; 1.9bn), confirming the dramatic improvement in its fortunes.

The previous year, Nissan had posted net losses of 684bn yen - the seventh year in eight it had failed to make a profit.

The turnaround has been achieved through a programme of deep cost cuts involving reductions in staff and production capacity and sale of non-core businesses.

At Thursday's shareholder meeting, Mr Ghosn reiterated his aim to cut Nissan's net debt to less than 700bn yen by the end of its 2002-03 business year.

He said he expected Nissan to capture 18.2% of the Japanese car market in the year to March 2002.

Last month, Nissan had a 17.7% market share.

It is vying with Mazda for second place in the market, behind Toyota.

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17 May 01 | Business
Nissan returns to profit
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From Datsun to Nissan
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