Nissan CEO Allegedly Installed Home Cameras to Spy on his Second-in-Command

There are Succession episodes that are less dramatic than the business opera going on right now at the top of Nissan, Japan’s third-largest carmaker. The CEO of the company is accused of spying on the second-in-command in an effort to exert authority over the Chief Operating Officer (COO), who was allegedly stalling talks with Renault.

According to information, a third-party American law firm inquiry found that Nissan put cameras in the company’s former COO Ashwani Gupta’s home so the company’s security staff could monitor him.

Related: Nissan Investigates Claims Against CEO

The investigation was launched to look into allegations that the company’s CEO, Makoto Uchida, had been spying on his deputy in an effort to gain power over him and fire him, according to Reuters. In response to a claim made by senior advisor Hari Nada, who also claimed that Gupta was asked to retire due to his personal behavior, an investigation was launched. According to those with knowledge of the situation, the request was motivated by a complaint of harassment made by a female employee against the COO.

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Nissan exercised its authority arbitrarily, according to the investigation, despite the fact that it did not reach a determination regarding the truth of the allegations against Gupta. Additionally, it was discovered that his home’s entrance was guarded by two separate security camera systems. To keep an eye on the COO, one was set up by a private security company, and the other by Nissan’s internal security.

Related: Carlos Ghosn Sues Nissan in Lebanon for $1 Billion

The company was probably within its rights to monitor Gupta, which may surprise some people. A second law firm hired to investigate whether Uchida’s investigation was legal, discovered no indication of unlawful action on Nissan’s part.

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Gupta, who was once viewed as a likely successor to the CEO, has now left his role as Nissan’s COO. The company announced that his role will not be filled by another executive, and will instead be completed by a number of employees, in order to “introduce a flatter and agile leadership structure.”

Related: Ashwani Gupta to Leave Nissan Later This Month

All of this appears to be to the advantage of Nissan’s CEO Makoto Uchida, who was allegedly irate with Gupta for his resistance to a deal with partner Renault. An electric car division that is being spun off from the French automaker was intended to be purchased by the Japanese automaker for 15% of the company. Senior Renault executives apparently felt that Gupta was a barrier to the transaction as well, according to Nissan insiders. They now appear to be able to finalize the agreement’s provisions without any objection.

Source: Reuters

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