Nissan responds to GM alliance talk

Here's Nissan's official response to the flurry of speculation caused by Tracinda Corp., Kirk Kerkorian's investment company, when it sent a letter to General Motors suggesting the automaker immediately explore joining Nissan and Renault's alliance.
Issued by Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan:

The Renault-Nissan Alliance is an open partnership, which has never been restricted to two partners. Under the right circumstances and with the appropriate partners, the Alliance could be expanded further. Such an expansion would only be considered by the Alliance if it were executed in the full spirit of the Alliance, which is founded on trust, transparency, performance and the full respect for individual corporate and brand identity.

Mr.Ghosn, President and CEO of Renault and Nissan was approached by Mr.Kerkorian, Mr.York and representatives of Tracinda Corporation to assess the merits of GM joining the Renault Nissan Alliance.

At this point, it is necessary that GM Board and top management fully support this project in order to start the study of this opportunity after agreement of Renault and Nissan boards.

While Nissan certainly seems receptive to the idea of showing GM the secret handshake, it makes no mention of Renault and Nissan being interested in purchasing a minority stake in the General.

At the close of trading today GM ended up $2.35 (8.56%) at $29.79. For fun, we snagged a copy of the exact letter Tracinda sent to GM today. Read the whole thing (it's pretty short) after the jump.

[Source: The Detroit News]

Letter from Tracinda Corp. to GM:

Dear Mr. Wagoner:

It is our understanding that Renault S.A. ("Renault") and Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. ("Nissan") are receptive to the concept of including General Motors
Corporation ("General Motors") in their partnership−alliance and purchasing from General Motors a significant minority interest in the Company.

The Renault−Nissan partnership−alliance has created tremendous engineering, manufacturing and marketing synergies, resulting in substantial benefits and cost savings to both Renault and Nissan.

We believe that participating in a global partnership−alliance with Renault and Nissan could enable General Motors to realize substantial synergies and cost savings and thereby greatly benefit the Company and enhance shareholder value. Accordingly, we urge the Board of Directors to form a committee to immediately and fully explore this opportunity together with management.



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