More stable supply chain helps Nissan

City A.M. Reporter
NISSAN Motors reported a 7.2 per cent rise in quarterly operating profit yesterday and said global production disrupted by Japan’s 11 March earthquake will return to normal at least a month earlier than predicted by bigger home rival, Toyota Motors.

Like its peers, Nissan, Japan’s second-largest automaker offered no outlook for the business year to March 2012, citing some remaining uncertainties over the pace recovery lower down in the supply chain.

“I think the picture of our own plants now is stabilised, but the picture coming from the suppliers is still being worked on,” Nissan chief executive Carlos Ghosn said. He said the availability of electricity from nuclear power plants was also a concern.

“If we have no cars, there’s no way you’re (not) going to lose market share,” he said.

Nissan plans to provide its forecasts for the current business year to March 2012 before its annual shareholders meeting, usually at the end of June. January to March operating profit at Nissan was 88.6bn yen (£672m), better than an average analyst forecast of 78.9bn yen.

Nissan, unlike Toyota and Honda Motors, reports under Japanese accounting rules and its profits from China are included at the operating level.