RUSSIA: Renault-Nissan and Unicredit to launch finance JV
Renault-Nissan Alliance ("Alliance") and UniCredit have agreed to establish a dedicated automotive bank offering a wide range of financial services to Renault, Nissan and Infiniti brand customers and dealers in Russia.
The joint venture will be controlled by the Alliance which will have a 60% stake. UniCredit will participate as a qualified minority investor with a 40% stake.
The establishment of a directly controlled financing platform is aimed at further strengthening the Alliance's competitive positioning in the Russian car market which is forecast to continue to grow rapidly over the next decade.
Russia is a key market for the Alliance. In 2012, more than a record 2.9 million new vehicles were sold in Russia. Over the same period, the Alliance posted record sales of 352,808 units (189,852 units for Renault, 153,747 units for Nissan and 9,209 units for Infiniti) corresponding to a market share of 12%.
Russia is also a core market for UniCredit where it operates through a fully owned subsidiary present on the market since 1989. Leveraging its participation in the joint venture, UniCredit plans to foster the growth of its retail banking activities in Russia.
The joint venture will further develop the successful and long standing cooperation between the Alliance and UniCredit which, in the Russian market, has been in place since 2007 in the form of a commercial agreement. The Alliance and UniCredit are partners also in other Central and Eastern European countries such as Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia and Hungary.
This project requires approvals from regulatory authorities for which filing is in process. The joint venture is expected to be operational by the end of 2013.