Yasuhiro Yamauchi has been appointed Nissan-Renault Alliance executive vice president, purchasing and chairman and managing director of Renault-Nissan Purchasing Organisation (RNPO), effective  1 January, 2015.

Yamauchi replaces Christian Vandenhende who was named head of quality and total customer satisfaction at Renault.

Yamauchi, currently alliance global vice president, purchasing and deputy managing director of RNPO, will report to Thierry Bolloré, chief competitive Officer, Renault, and Hiroto Saikawa, chief competitive officer, Nissan Motor, in his new position.

Véronique Sarlat-Depotte, currently Alliance global director, RNPO body and electrical, will succeed Yamauchi and become a member of the Renault management committee reporting to Yamauchi.

Purchasing is one of four key business functions that Renault and Nissan merged on 1 April, 2014 to boost efficiency and synergies. The other converged functions are engineering, manufacturing and supply chain management, and human resources.

The convergence of the four functions is expected to help the 15-year-old Alliance achieve at least EUR4.3biln in annualised synergies by 2016, up from EUR2.9bn in 2013.