August 6, 2021

Seki leaves Nissan, barely appointed Vice Director of Operations

New Trafalgar hit at Nissan! Jun Seki, recently appointed vice executive director – after serving as vice president responsible for leading the automaker’s turnaround plan – told Reuters news agency he had decided to step down, just weeks after taking office . A decision that could disrupt Nissan’s efforts to turn the page on the Ghosn affair and deal with the drop in sales.

Jun Seki quitte Nissan

Jun Seki, Nissan’s vice chief operating officer and former CEO candidate, told Reuters that he was leaving the Japanese automaker to become chairman of Nidec, a Kyoto-based manufacturer of automotive components and precision engines.

He should probably leave Nissan next January after three decades with the manufacturer, including a stint at the head of its activities in China.

“I love Nissan and feel bad for leaving the turnaround work unfinished, but I’m 58, and it’s an offer I couldn’t refuse. It’s also probably my last chance to run a business, ”he said in a brief interview.

“It is not a question of money” assured Jun Seki. Even adding that he would lose financially, being “well paid” at Nissan. But refusing, however, to provide further information concerning the reasons for his departure….

Nissan and Nidec declined to comment on them.

Nissan recovery plan

In order to redress the bar, Nissan has launched a far-reaching recovery plan. Started in April, it is now on track to generate hundreds of billions of yen in cost reductions and operational efficiency gains by March 2022, according to two sources.

A very disturbed governance

Adding to concerns about the deleterious mood among senior Nissan executives, the sources further said that Seki, COO Ashwani Gupta and CEO Makoto Uchida had so far failed to regroup after were appointed to their respective posts last October. And this, while they officially took office on December 1.
These appointments were not the source of any “” consistent and immediate chemistry “said one of the sources. Thus suggesting that the current had absolutely not passed between the men.

Seki’s resignation could further complicate Nissan’s relationship with major shareholder Renault. The executive recently worked in Paris for a year and was considered relatively close to the French automaker.

Asked about the possibility that his departure from Nissan was directly linked to the refusal of his candidacy for the position of CEO, Seki replied that this was not the case without giving more details.

Contacted by a headhunter

One of the two sources said Seki was contacted by a headhunter for a job at Nidec last April, after working a year in Paris.
Nidec’s 75-year-old chairman, Shigenobu Nagamori, was looking for a possible successor to lead and grow his business.

Nidec, which sees electric vehicles as a key driver of growth, has a 40% global market share in steering motors for electric cars and has said it wants to increase its share in propulsion motors for this type of vehicle. .

Seki would not have had further contact with Nidec after April … until the recruiter called it back on October 8, when Nissan announced the appointment of its new management team, including that of Uchida as CEO.
After this second attempt at approach, Seki would have agreed to meet Nagamori to refuse the offer… but the president of Nidec would have finally convinced Seki to accept his offer.

Our opinion by

The deleterious atmosphere which reigns within the direction of Nissan is hardly favorable to an effective recovery in hand. The fact that the former manager of the builder’s recovery is leaving the ship is not also reassuring.