Embattled airbag maker Takata Corp faced a further blow yesterday, after automaker Nissan Motor Co followed Toyota Motor Corp and Honda Motor Co in deciding to cease its use of the crisis-hit company’s airbag inflators.
Nissan said that it will no longer use inflators that contain ammonium nitrate following an announcement from the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which announced up to US$200 million in penalties against Takata and criticized the Tokyo-based firm over a years-long deception over the safety of its airbags.
Takata’s airbag defect can cause them to deploy with explosive force, sending metal shrapnel hurtling toward drivers and passengers. The exploding airbags have been linked with eight deaths and scores of injures.
On Friday, Takata reported a six-month net loss of ￥5.6 billion (US$45 million) as costs stemming from the crisis pile up.
“In line with the recent announcement from the US’ National Highway Traffic Safety Administration we have decided to no longer use inflators containing ammonium nitrate in airbags for future models,” Nissan said.
“We will continue to put our customers’ safety first and work to replace the inflators in vehicles under recall as quickly as possible,” it said.
In related news, Renault SA’s advisory board on Friday said that it wants to strengthen its alliance with Nissan after the Japanese automaker voiced concern over the French government increasing its voting rights in the French firm.
In a statement, Renault said it wanted to see a solution “reinforcing the alliance” with Nissan, with whom it has been linked for the past 16 years.
The 19-member advisory board said that they had held talks with Renault’s two main long-term shareholders, the French government and Nissan, to allay Japanese concerns.
The French government raised its stake in Renault to 19.7 percent this year, effectively denying the Japanese company a say in how the business is operated.
It also prompted Nissan’s chief competitive officer Hiroto Saikawa to say his company had expressed its concerns to both the French and Japanese governments.
Polytronics Technology Corp (聚鼎科技) yesterday announced that it is buying Henkel AG’s thermal clad dielectric material (TCLAD) business division for US$26 million as the Taiwanese firm aims to improve its technology, product portfolio and revenue performance. Polytronics, headquartered in the Hsinchu Science Park (新竹科學園區), is a supplier of protection components and heat dissipation materials. The firm entered the metallic heat-dissipation substrate market in 2007 and developed a unique solventless production process. Its board of directors approved signing an agreement with Henkel to acquire the German chemical firm’s TCLAD division in the US. The purchase includes all assets and business interests, including equipment,
SIZE MATTERS: Medium-sized hotels that do not have the support of parent groups are more vulnerable and are forced to take action, a REPro Knight Frank researcher said About 50 hotels across Taiwan are seeking to exit the market as they succumb to the bleak business outlook amid international travel restrictions imposed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Yomi Hotel (優美飯店) on Minsheng E Road, Sec 1, in Taipei is seeking to transfer ownership with an asking price of NT$950 million (US$32.15 million) and a pledge for a lease contract that guarantees a 3 percent return. The budget hotel, with room rates that start from NT$1,400 per night, maintains normal operations, but has been struggling since March, when the government placed restrictions on inbound and outbound travel. Occupancy rates for hotels in
‘SENSITIVE MARKETS’: The previously unannounced project would involve the company handing over control of data to a third party to sidestep privacy concerns Google has abandoned plans to offer a major new cloud service in China and other politically sensitive countries due in part to concerns over geopolitical tensions and the COVID-19 pandemic, two employees familiar with the matter said, revealing the challenges for US tech giants to secure business in those markets. In May, the search giant shut down the initiative, known as “Isolated Region” and which sought to address nations’ desires to control data within their borders, the employees said. The action was considered a “massive strategy shift,” said one of the employees, who added that Isolated Region had involved hundreds of employees
GOGOROS TO GO: The scooter maker’s CEO said that the electric vehicles ‘are the perfect complement to a program designed to stimulate the Taiwanese economy’ Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua (王美花) yesterday announced a draw to encourage people to claim their Triple Stimulus Vouchers digitally. The prizes include movie tickets and 25 electric scooters donated by Gogoro Inc (睿能創意), Wang said. The Ministry of Economic Affairs said that it would hold a scooter draw every day for the next 10 days, beginning yesterday, after which there would be a draw every week for 15 weeks. The first winner was a Taiwan Cooperative Bank (合庫銀行) credit card user, the ministry said. The benefits of claiming the vouchers digitally extend beyond the draws, with many businesses offering special deals for