Carlos Ghosn To Continue As Renault Chairman Despite Corruption Allegations

Carlos Ghosn To Continue As Renault Chairman Despite Corruption Allegations

Japanese authorities have extended the detention of Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn by 10 days, according to local media reports. The Financial Times reported Ghosn had a plan to merge Nissan and Renault, something the Nissan board had opposed.

The biggest questions surround Ghosn's alleged misuse of company money to purchase millions of dollars in properties around the globe with seemingly no ties to official business. Philippe Lagayette will remain the lead independent director.

French automobile group Renault made a decision to appoint two interim heads of the company to replace Carlos Ghosn, who remains as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer but is "temporarily incapacitated", the company announced in a statement.

Chief operating officer Thierry Bolloré was appointed to the role during an emergency board meeting to stand in for Ghosn, whom Renault described in a statement as "temporarily incapacitated".

Mr Bollore, 55, a soft-spoken French national from Brittany, joined Renault in 2012 from car-parts supplier Faurecia SA, where he rose through the ranks to become vice president with responsibilities for global industry, quality and packaging.

The board stopped short of firing Ghosn and requested that Nissan provide all information in its possession arising from its internal investigations that led to his arrest for alleged financial improprieties.

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Prosecutors in Japan said they were holding Ghosn for allegedly collaborating to falsify securities statements and under-report $44.6 million in income from 2011 to 2015.

The merger would have rendered the Renault-Nissan alliance "irreversible". The setup has come under pressure from Nissan in recent years because of its lopsided balance of power in favor of Renault. Renault holds a 43.5% stake in Nissan, while Nissan owns 15% of Renault.

In a letter sent to Renault employees on Monday, Bollore expressed full support for Ghosn and pledged to preserve the alliance.

French finance minister Bruno Le Maire was quoted as saying Mr Ghosn was no longer in a position to run the company.

The Brazilian-born businessman has been credited with turning around both Nissan and Renault before becoming the linchpin of the alliance the companies later formed.

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