TOKYO - Nissan Motor Co. has intensified its restructuring efforts, even before Renault SA cost-cutter Carlos Ghosn joins the struggling Japanese company.
Nissan will cut its nonmanufacturing work force by 5,000 around the globe by the end of March 2001, President Yoshikazu Hanawa said. That goes well beyond the 2,000 Nissan had said it would cut in Japan.
In addition, Nissan will cut its Japanese production capacity from 2 million currently to 1.5 million in the next two to three years, compared with its previous target of 1.7 million.
Nissan also will omit its dividend for the fiscal year that ended March 31, saving $3.4 million. It will be the first time Nissan has not paid a dividend since it was listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 1951.
Nissan said its group interest-bearing debt totaled ¥1.9 trillion, or about $15.8 billion at current exchange rates, as of March 31. Renault, using figures that include two more affiliates in the group total, has said Nissan's group debt comes to more than $33 billion.
The plans to intensify Nissan's cost-cutting efforts came as the carmaker revised its earnings forecast for the year that ended March 31. It said it did more poorly at the parent level in Japan, excluding affiliates, than previously forecast. Better results in North America and Europe, however, left its group forecast little changed.
Actual results are scheduled to be released in late May.
At the parent level, Nissan now is forecasting a net loss of $291.7 million, worse than the prior forecast of a net loss of $83.3 million. Ordinary income, before taxes and extraordinary items, is forecast to be in the black by $125 million, down from the prior forecast of $583 million. Revenues are forecast at $27.7 billion, down from the earlier forecast of $28.3 billion.
At the group, or consolidated, level, however, Nissan's forecast of a net loss of $250 million on revenues of $53.3 billion is unchanged. It now is forecasting ordinary income of $125 million, down from the prior forecast of $500 million.
On March 27, Nissan and Renault agreed the French carmaker would pay $5.4 billion to acquire a 36.8 percent stake in Nissan and a 22.5 percent stake in Nissan Diesel Motor Co. Later this year, Ghosn, who led Renault's successful cost-cutting efforts, will move to Tokyo to become Nissan's COO.