PARIS -- PSA Peugeot Citroen CEO Philippe Varin saw an alliance with General Motors as a way to strengthen the French automaker. But his biggest shareholder, the Peugeot family, is unhappy with that plan and Varin's performance, French newspaper La Tribune reported last week.
The family wants Varin and his management team replaced because of a fall in sales and dissatisfaction over its alliance with GM, La Tribune said, according to a Reuters report.
The Peugeot family controls 25 percent of the company's capital and 38 percent of its voting rights.
A spokesman for PSA declined to comment.
Varin took over as CEO in 2009 with the aim of expanding PSA's international footprint and moving its Peugeot and Citroen brands upmarket. But after a year and a half of solid sales, lifted by the success of the Peugeot 3008 crossover and Citroen DS models as well as government scrappage incentives, the company's business began to slide, dragged down by weak European markets.
That prompted PSA to seek an alliance with GM this year. GM became PSA's second-largest shareholder with a 7 percent stake.
PSA, which is heavily exposed to European markets suffering under the region's debt crisis, is trying to make big savings through restructuring its operations after debt increased to $4.29 billion at the end of 2011.
PSA is targeting 1,900 voluntary job reductions in France, out of 6,000 in Europe, and has em-barked on a range of money-raising efforts in 2012 that include the sale of its 48-year-old headquarters building.