Renault, Luca De Meo: difficult situation, many sacrifices are needed

Renault, Luca De Meo: difficult situation, many sacrifices are needed
The car manufacturer Renault reported losses of more than 7 billion euros in the first half of 2020 so much so that the CEO himself, Luca De Meo, expressed the gravity of the current situation in which the French group finds itself. Not surprisingly, the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have led to a drastic drop in car sales, so that 2020 is confirmed as a year of great crisis for the automotive industry.

So a an inevitably negative figure compared to that of 2019, when the French carmaker had suffered a much lighter loss, equal to 141 million euros. During a publicly released interview, the CEO himself reiterated how important it is to review Renault's strategies by laying a solid foundation on new investments, resulting in difficult decisions. However, it does not exclude full confidence in the group's ability to recover.

Great impact on work

Renault's chief executive confirmed that he has to undertake rather drastic, not easy, solutions that they will have an impact on people's lives.

I ask workers for an important effort because the company needs it. The relationship with the majority of the unions is fluid, it is clear that everyone plays his game, but the goal must not be not to send home but to protect the work. The French state has given us confidence in the operational management. I remain confident because I imagine a Renault capable of bringing modernity to the automotive sector; after all, the pandemic has given all of us back a central role of the automobile with respect to public transport which is less safe.

The fundamental role of a decisive relaunch of the Group which will have to clash with a context should therefore not be excluded complicated by the drastic consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The pandemic has given back the centrality to the car to the detriment of public transport that people use less for fear of contagion, a phenomenon that has also blown up the used car market. On the new market, we are in full energy transition and all manufacturers must offer new generation cars with low - if not zero - emissions, but the recovery will not be easy. We must not hide, however, that the coronavirus will have an important impact, especially for some purchase groups: we think that the market will be able to return to pre-covid levels no earlier than 2022-23.

During the interview we did not miss a small look at the situation of his country of origin, reaffirming the great commitment made in order to optimize the Italian car market.

Italy is a great country in difficulty like many others. But the demographic issue is worrying. Italy is aging and this will weigh on the country's development potential. A new generation of Renault products will soon arrive on the market. We are the fourth largest car manufacturer in Italy but we can do better.

An obvious delay on the charging infrastructure

On the great issue of electrification, the CEO reiterated the presence of a major problem relating to a delay in the charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. Infrastructures whose construction should involve builders, the state and the energy companies themselves, but it is no coincidence that the increase in sales is inevitably faster than their development. This could therefore lead to a large number of sales of electric cars, without being able to recharge them.

The homage to Marchionne

In the public intervention by Luca De Meo, a relative parenthesis was not missing. to his links with the Fiat Group and Sergio Marchionne.

I owe a lot to Marchionne, he was a person who had great ability to analyze situations and great managerial courage. His greatest merits have been his great determination and the ability to look beyond the traditional frontiers of management. Marchionne was very capable of always changing the perimeter of situations and allowed Fiat to project itself onto the international scene. His biggest mistake was to ask himself so much, to work so obsessively. Unfortunately he left young.

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