Nissan consolidated financial results for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2003 showed a 33% increase in net profit to 495.2 billion yen ($US4.06 billion, E4.20 billion), compared to 372.3 billion yen for fiscal year 2001, and a claimed industry-leading operating profit of 10.8%. The financial results were in line with those ‘pre-announced’ on April 23, 2003.

The company said in a statement that two of the three commitments of its so-called Nissan 180 three-year plan aimed to establish sustainable, profitable growth have been realised in the first year – the operating margin commitment and debt elimination.

Nissan sold 2,771,000 vehicles worldwide in fiscal year 2002, an increase of 6.7% from fiscal year 2001 sales of 2,597,000 units. Fiscal year 2002 sales and market share increased in each region except Europe.

Consolidated sales revenues reached 6,828.6 billion yen, up 10.2% from the prior year.

Consolidated operating profit improved by 50.7% – from 489.2 billion yen in fiscal year 2001 to a record 737.2 billion yen in fiscal year 2002. The operating profit margin reached 10.8% of net sale which is claimed to be the highest operating profit margin in the global automotive industry.

Consolidated ordinary profit came to 710.1 billion yen, up from 414.7 billion yen in the prior year.

Current and deferred income taxes for the period came to 198.7 billion yen.

The company’s net automotive debt has been totally eliminated, down from 431.7 billion yen at the beginning of fiscal year 2002. At the end of fiscal year 2002, Nissan’s net automotive cash position is 8.6 billion yen at constant accounting standards.

Consolidated shareholder's equity as of March 31, 2003, totalled 1,808.3 billion yen, an increase of 187.5 billion yen compared to 1,620.8 billion yen as of March 31, 2002.

Nissan reiterated its forecast for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2004, announced on April 23, 2003. Full-year consolidated net sales are expected to reach 7.45 trillion yen, an increase of 9.1% from fiscal year 2002. Operating profit is expected to be 820 billion yen, an increase of 11.2%. Ordinary profit is expected to be 781 billion yen, an increase of 10.0%. The company expects to achieve a net profit of 495 billion yen, with the expectation of a return to normal tax treatment in Japan. Net cash generated by operations is estimated at 100 billion yen even after the 120 billion yen investment to buy the 50% stake in China’s Dong Feng.