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Nissan Slashes Quarterly Loss to $125 Million

Nissan’s losses for the January-March quarter shrank vividly as Japan’s No. 3 car maker benefited from a global auto recovery and booming car sales in China. Nissan Motor Co.’s quarterly loss was 11.6 billion yen ($125 million); a fraction of the 276.9 billion yen loss recorded a year earlier.

Nissan, allied with Renault SA of France, which owns 44 per cent of the Japanese automaker, posted a profit of 42.4 billion yen for the full year and expects profit to more than triple to 150 billion yen ($1.6 billion) in the year through March 2011. Nissan’s annual revenue fell 10.9 per cent to 7.52 trillion yen ($81 billion), partly because of the strong yen. Nissan had a loss of 233.7 billion yen in the year through March 2009 due to the financial crisis.

Ghosn, Nissan President and Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn who also heads Renault said Nissan’s 11-year alliance with Renault will be the means of keeping the recovery going. The new partnership with Daimler AG will also help.

The three-way tie-up among Renault, Nissan and Daimler gives each company a 3.1 per cent stake in the others, and they have agreed to share auto components to bolster offerings in small cars. Nissan is enjoying success of the zero-emission Leaf zero-emission in the U.S., Japan and Europe. It has been less bullish on gas-electric hybrids compared to rivals Toyota with its Prius and Honda that makes the Insight.

Nissan plans to sell 3.8 million cars worldwide for the fiscal year through March 2011, up 8.1 per cent. Nissan sold 3.5 million units in the year ended March 31. Sales were down in the U.S. and Europe but healthier in Japan. In China, sales surged 39 per cent to 756,000 cars.

Toyota and Honda too have reported better results for the fiscal fourth quarter compared to the same period the previous year, underlining a gradual auto recovery. The Japanese car makers have their eyes on markets like China and India to fuel growth.


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