Nissan Motor Co. logged a 57-percent surge in net income in its fiscal quarter ended Dec. 31, 2013, to JPY84.3 billion ($825 million). That makes Carlos Ghosn-led Nissan the least profitable Japanese carmaker at a time when the weaker yen is boosting profits at most of the country’s exporters. Nissan missed out on the earnings windfall from the weaker yen.
It is also still rebounding from production delays and is facing slowing emerging markets. "There's a sense of crisis in the company and Ghosn has started to address problems," said Tsuyoshi Mochimaru, an auto analyst at Longine. "Things will improve, but will take some time." Net income in the fiscal quarter, however, was 33 percent higher than the average of nine analyst estimates polled by Bloomberg.
Nissan’s third-quarter operating profit (JPY78.7 billion) was 29 percent below the average estimate. Nissan also adjusted year-earlier figures to reflect accounting changes.
Three months ago, Ghosn disclosed a management shuffle after Nissan trimmed its profit forecast by 15 percent, blaming higher-than-expected incentives in the United States, poor execution and slower growth in emerging countries.
Ghosn eliminated the chief operating officer role and made a number of executive changes. He also reorganized operations to six regions from three, breaking out markets like China, to improve execution. Nissan posted a 3.3-percent rise in sales in 2013 to a record 5.1 million units.