Nissan announced today that the company has purchased a 34% equity stake in Mitsubishi Motors Corporation and have signed an agreement to form a strategic alliance.
The transaction, which cost Nissan 237 billion yen ($CA3billion), makes Nissan the largest shareholder of Mitsubishi and creates an extension of an existing collaboration that has taken place over the past five years. Purchasing, common vehicle platforms, technology sharing, joint plant utilization, and growth markets are among the areas cited as being encompassed in the new partnership agreement.
Several steps remain before the deal can be closed such as the signing of a definitive alliance agreement and a separate shareholders agreement with current Mitsubishi Group shareholders -- including Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Corporation, and The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, all of which Nissan says are expected to maintain a significant collective ownership stake in the company and support the new strategic alliance -- and regulatory approvals. The deal is expected to close by the end of the 2016 calendar year.
The move marks another expansion of Nissan's alliance business model, which the company has modeled with Renault for the past 17 years. Nissan has acquired stakes or made partnership agreements with other automotive groups in the past such as Daimler and AvtoVaz.
No mention of any influence Mitsubishi's recently revealed fuel economy fixing scandal may have had on the arrangement was made within the context of the announcement.