Nissan has announced a major revamp to its top management structure in the wake of recent scandals. The company’s board of directors today appointed current Nissan senior vice-president and president of Dongfeng Motor Co, Makoto Uchida as representative executive officer and CEO of Nissan.
In addition, the board appointed current Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s COO Ashwani Gupta as representative executive officer and chief operating officer of Nissan. Nissan’s senior vice-president Jun Seki has been appointed to the position of vice-chief operating officer and will report to Gupta.
Uchida has been with Nissan Corporation for over 20 years and Gupta has been part of the organisation for over 19 years.
Born in July 1966, Makoto Uchida graduated in theology from Doshisha University, Japan, after which he joined Nissho Iwai Corporation. In October 2003, he joined Nissan Motor Co. In September 2012, he was elevated to join Renault Samsung Motors. In April 2014, he became Program Director, Nissan Motor Co, subsequently becoming Corporate Vice President, Alliance Purchasing, in November 2016. In April 2018, he was promoted to Senior Vice President, Nissan Motor Co; President, Dongfeng Motor Co, and to Senior Vice President, Nissan Motor Co; Management Committee for China (MC China), President, Dongfeng Motor Co, Ltd in April 2019.
Born in Dehradun, India, Ashwani Gupta graduated from Jawaharlal Nehru Engineering College, India, and obtained a diploma from INSEAD Business School in France. He started his career in 1992 in engineering and purchasing in the private sector and later moved to management positions with Honda India and Japan in 1996.
He joined Renault in 2006 as general manager of purchasing at Renault India in Mumbai. In 2008, he moved to the Renault Nissan Purchasing Organization in France as global supplier account manager for braking systems. He joined Renault Nissan B.V. in 2009 as deputy general manager, global purchasing. In 2011, Gupta was appointed global program director for Datsun vehicles at Nissan Motor Co in Japan, where he led the product development to launch in India, Russia, Indonesia and South Africa. He has been vice president of Renault’s Light Commercial Vehicle Division since 2014, where he oversees the automaker’s worldwide LCV business.
On April 1, 2017, Gupta was named Alliance Senior Vice President of the Renault-Nissan LCV Business, and then Alliance Senior Vice President of Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi LCV Business since April 2018. Earlier this year, he was appointed COO, Mitsubishi Motor Corporation and Representative Executive Officer, COO, Mitsubishi Motor Corporation.
Nissan says the appointments are aimed to be effective from January 1, 2020.
Commenting on the new management, Yasushi Kimura, chair of the Board of Directors, Nissan said: "The board concluded that Uchida is the right leader to drive the business forward. Nissan’s Nomination Committee led the nomination process and assessed candidates thoroughly in line with the new three-committee governance structure established in June. We expect Uchida to lead the company as one team, immediately focus on the recovery of the business and revitalize the company. We look forward to Gupta and Seki fully leveraging their expertise and experience to support the new CEO."