May 11, 2012

Fiscal Year 2011 Full-Year Financial Results
Media Conference
Carlos Ghosn, President and CEO
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd

Fiscal year 2011 was a record year for Nissan in terms of sales and growth. Despite natural disasters and currency exchange headwinds, Nissan again demonstrated its ability to manage successfully through crisis. In each case, we quickly focused on the actions required to protect the company and to ensure business continuity.

Today I will report on Nissan's full-year financial performance and also provide an outlook on fiscal year 2012.

For the full year, Nissan's consolidated net revenues reached 9.409 trillion yen. Operating profits reached 545.8 billion yen, and net income amounted to 341.4 billion yen. Automotive free cash flow resulted in a positive 379.5 billion yen. We ended fiscal year 2011 with a net cash position of 619.8 billion yen.

Against a turbulent environment caused by factors out of our control, Nissan made substantial progress across many fronts during 2011.

In June of 2011, we unveiled a comprehensive, structured, business plan to deliver accelerated progress with the launch of Nissan Power 88, a six-year program for mid-term growth.

In defining Power 88, the word Power symbolizes our goals for brand and sales development, combined with greater focus on the overall customer experience. The numerals 88 represent our targets for achieving 8% global market share and a sustainable 8% operating profit margin. The six-year timeframe reflects our confidence to make the necessary strategic investments in products, technologies and geographic growth that will benefit the company far beyond the end of the plan.

Turning to specific actions during 2011, let me start with the core of the company: our products and technologies.

Under Nissan Power 88, we will deliver one new vehicle every six weeks, on average, for the six years of the plan. That means broadening our range of models not only for Nissan and Infiniti, but creating new vehicles to support the return of the iconic Datsun brand.

Last year, we launched five new models globally: the Tiida in China, the Lafesta Highway Star in Japan, front-drive and rear-drive versions of the NV400 commercial van in Europe and the Infiniti JX in the United States.

During 2011, the Nissan LEAF passed the sales milestone to make it the world's most successful electric vehicle. In total, we sold 23,000 units last year and a cumulative 30,000 units since the start of sales in late 2010.

Nissan made progress on multiple fronts during 2011. We made new investments to expand our global manufacturing footprint and we further utilized the Alliance and our growing network of partners.

In China, Nissan's largest global market, we started production at the second Huadu plant building the Tiida hatchback. Huadu is now our largest manufacturing facility worldwide with annual production capacity of 600,000 units, illustrating the strength of our joint venture with Dongfeng, our Chinese partner.

In Brazil and Mexico we announced new manufacturing plants in Resende and Aguascalientes respectively. These investments will contribute towards building 2 million units of production capacity in the Americas by 2014, up from 1.2 million units last year.

In March we announced the return of Datsun. We are now preparing for the return of this iconic brand in India, Indonesia and Russia starting in 2014. The Datsun brand will bring modern, high-value and robust products to the rapidly expanding middle classes in these important growth markets.

Our Light Commercial Vehicle business passed a significant milestone in 2011 with sales exceeding 1 million vehicles for the first time and keeping us on track to make Nissan the world's largest LCV manufacturer by 2016.

Nissan has the most enduring and successful network of global partners. This network extends from our alliance with Renault, to our growing strategic cooperation with Daimler to Ashok Leyland, Mitsubishi and now Avtovaz. At a time when many manufacturers are just starting to work together, Nissan has a proven track record of managing successful relationships with other automakers. In calendar year 2011, the Renault-Nissan Alliance, including AvtoVaz, achieved more than 8 million unit sales, making us one of the top three automobile groups in the world.

In 2011, valuable progress was achieved:

Together with Renault, we delivered an incremental €1.7 Billion of additional synergies. As part of our growing partnership with Russian partner AvtoVaz, Renault and Nissan have together invested €400 Million to produce five vehicles across three brands at the Togliatti facility.

With Daimler, we announced an all-new entry Infiniti model will be created using their latest vehicle architecture and we will manufacture engines for Mercedes and Infiniti at our Decherd engine plant in the United States.

In partnership with Ashok Leyland, we started production of the Dost, a compact and affordable pickup truck for the Indian market. After just six months on sale, the Dost is already the market leader in the six states where it was launched. It was recently voted LCV Cargo Carrier of the Year and is well positioned to help us grow our LCV presence in the Indian market.

With Mitsubishi we established a new joint-venture company to lead the design and engineering of an all-new mini car in Japan for both companies.

FY11 Performance
Let me now turn to a review of our performance in 2011.

Global industry volumes increased by 4.2% to 75.7 million units. Nissan's global sales amounted to 4.845 million units, a 15.8% increase year-on-year and an all-time record for our company. Our sales evolution outperformed the industry with Nissan ending the fiscal year with our global market share up 0.6 points at 6.4%

By region and markets, the breakdown is as follows:

In Japan, TIV increased 3.3% year-on-year. Our sales reached 655,000 units, 9.2% above the previous year. Nissan's market share rose 0.8 points to 13.8%. Strong sales of the Serena and Juke contributed to our share gains, while sales of the Nissan LEAF reached 8,700 units.

In China, TIV increased 3.3% to 17.2 million units. Our sales grew 21.9% to 1,247,000 units. Our market share was 7.3%, up 1.1 points from the prior year. Five models, Sunny, Teana, Sylphy, Qashqai and Tiida, achieved annual sales of more than 100,000 units each. The momentum has continued into the new fiscal year with sales for the January to March period increasing by 12.2%, resulting in further market share gains to end the period at 7.5%.

Turning to North America, in the United States, TIV increased 8.9% to 13.2 million units. We sold 1.08 million units, up 11.8% from the previous year. Our market share increased two-tenths of a percentage point, to 8.2%, driven by strong demand for Altima, Rogue and Versa. The Nissan LEAF also contributed to this growth with total sales of 11,000 units. In Canada, sales were up 5% to 87,500 units. In Mexico, Nissan maintained its market leadership with a share improvement of 2.2 points to 25.3% and sales increasing 20.7% to 235,300 units.

In Europe including Russia, TIV increased 1.7%. Nissan sold 713,000 units, up 17.5% from the prior year, and bringing our market share to 3.9%. European sales excluding Russia increased 9.4% to 552,000 units, while sales in Russia increased 57.3% to 161,000 units.

In other markets - including Africa, Latin America and the ASEAN region - our sales volumes were up 16.4% to 826,000 units. In those markets, Latin America increased 33.2% to 225,600 units, with a particularly strong performance in Brazil where sales rose by 94.8% to 81,000 units. Sales in Indonesia also increased sharply, up 41.8% to 60,400 units, while sales in India more than doubled to 31,300 units.

I will now detail our financial performance for fiscal year 2011. Consolidated net revenues increased 635.9 billion yen to 9.409 trillion yen, primarily driven by the increase in volumes, which was partially offset by the negative foreign exchange impact, especially from the strength of the Yen.

Consolidated operating profit totaled 545.8 billion yen, yielding a 5.8% operating margin.
Net income was 341.4 billion yen, resulting in a net margin of 3.6%. Negative foreign exchange movements, raw material costs and selling expenses offset the positive contributions to operating income, including the increase in volumes and our purchasing cost reduction efforts.

Looking at these movements in detail:

  • The 170 billion yen negative impact from foreign exchange came mainly from the appreciation of the yen against the U.S. dollar.
  • The increase in energy and raw material costs was a negative 115.6 billion yen.
  • Purchasing cost reduction efforts resulted in a saving of 200.1 billion yen.
  • Volume and mix produced a positive impact of 223.6 billion yen.
  • The increase in selling expenses resulted in a 151.3 billion yen negative movement.
  • R&D expenses increased by 33.1 billion yen.
  • Sales financing contributed 49.8 billion yen.
  • Other items produced a positive impact of 4.8 billion yen.

Finally, we finished the year in a net cash position with 619.8 billion yen.

FY12 Outlook
Moving to our outlook for fiscal year 2012, we expect our global sales to reach 5.35 million units, an increase of 10.4%, which is another record level for Nissan.

With a TIV assumption of 79.7 million units, a 5.3 % increase year-on-year, our global market share is expected to grow from 6.4% to 6.7%.

During 2012 we will completely renew three of our large volume global models. The first to be launched is the new Altima which was revealed last month at the New York Motor Show. In total, we will launch ten all-new vehicles in 2012 including the Pathfinder, Sylphy/Sentra, NV350 Caravan and a long wheelbase version of the Infiniti M sedan.

Of the 90 new technologies we will launch during Nissan Power 88, 15 will start this year including an expanded Multi-Sensing System built on the Around View Monitor image processing technology. We will also launch our next generation XTRONIC CVT. Nissan is the recognized global leader in CVTs and this latest generation provides a 10% fuel economy benefit compared to the current model.

Fuel-saving technologies are part of our Blue Citizenship program that guides our environmental, safety and corporate responsibility actions. During Nissan Power 88 we will invest 70% of our advanced R&D budget into environmental technologies, including those focused on delivering zero emission leadership.

During 2012 we will continue our expansion into new and emerging markets. We are launching the first product from our new Chinese local brand, Venucia. The creation of Venucia allows us to compete for the first time in the four million strong entry segment of the Chinese market.

In Russia, together with our partners Renault and AvtoVaz, Nissan is working towards a 40% share of this important market. Earlier this month we signed an MOU expanding our relationship with AvtoVaz and in the second half of this year, we will launch our first locally-built entry-level car, the Almera, which will be built at the AvtoVaz plant in Togliatti.

Moving to our premium business, later this month we will open the new global headquarters for Infiniti in Hong Kong. In 2012 we will add new markets for Infiniti such as Chile and Australia as we drive towards our sales target of 500,000 units across 70 markets by 2016.

Under Nissan Power 88, we have made both brand power and sales power a specific focus for the company.

A strong brand helps our business in every measurable area of the sales and marketing process - from overall opinion to purchase intention through to the revenue we generate from every vehicle sold.

In 2012 we will focus on enhancing overall opinion. Based on the high statistical correlation between overall opinion and market share, this measurement combined with revenue growth, best defines the most cost-effective way to grow our market share.

Our initial efforts are being recognized with Nissan being named last year as both a Top 100 global brand and the most improved brand by the influential Interbrand Group. This year our first ever global brand campaign will be rolled out in locations such as major international airports reaching hundreds of millions of people with the same consistent message.

Our focus on sale power is driving the expansion of our dealer network in high-growth and emerging markets using a proven and scientific geomarketing strategy to optimize dealer coverage and increase customer convenience. This year, we will expand our global network by opening 750 new dealer locations - the largest annual increase during Nissan Power 88. We will also increase our sales per outlet - a key measure of operational efficiency.

In consequence of our planned performance, we have filed the following financial forecast with the Tokyo Stock Exchange. We have used a foreign exchange rate assumption of 82 yen to the dollar and 105 yen to the euro:

  • Net revenue is forecast to be 10.3 trillion yen.
  • Operating profit is expected to be 700 billion yen.
  • Net income is forecast to be 400 billion yen.
  • Capital expenditures are expected to reach 550 billion yen.
  • R&D expenses will amount to 485 billion yen.

Operating profit analysis
Nissan is on track to grow by over 500,000 units during 2012 towards our objective of an 8% global market share by 2016. In support of this growth plan, necessary investments in R&D and capital expenditures are being made to support the long-term expansion of the company. Including these factors, the variance in operating profit between 2011 and 2012 is broken down as follows:

  • The impact from foreign exchange is a positive 40 billion yen, with the U.S. dollar and Russian ruble accounting for the majority of this variance.
  • The net result of the increase in raw materials / energy costs and our purchasing cost reduction efforts is a positive 180 billion yen.
  • Volume and mix will produce a positive impact of 175 billion yen as a result of the growth in global sales volume.
  • The increase in selling expenses is a negative 125 billion yen due to the increase in volumes.
  • Sales finace is a negative 17 billion yen.
  • Cost for future growth and others are negative 98.8 billion yen, due mainly to the increase in R&D and expenses for capacity expansion such as our new plants in Brazil and Mexico.

Based on our outlook, the factors presented in this report and our expectations for continued solid free cash flow generation, we are forecasting a 25% increase in the dividend to 25 yen per share for fiscal year 2012.

As we start the new year, Nissan stands as a company re-tooled and ready to accelerate its growth.

Together with a stronger brand, investments in products, technologies and global capacity, we have the tools to achieve Nissan Power 88 and beyond.

You can continue to expect the best from Nissan

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