Renault said it had suspended three executives with “extremely strategic positions,” apparently for leaking secret information concerning the group’s electric-car plans.
Christian Husson, general counsel of the French automaker, said in a statement that the company had conducted an investigation that had lasted several months. That investigation uncovered “a body of converging evidence demonstrating that three group employees have committed misconduct that infringes Renault’s ethics, consciously and deliberately endangering the company’s assets.”
According to the French news agency AFP, the three executives had all headed electric car projects. One was even a member of the 30-strong management committee of the automaker, AFP said.
Renault and its alliance partner Nissan have made a huge commitment to electric vehicle technology. They have pledged to launch a range of electric vehicles and expect these to make up a substantial part of its sales and revenues in coming years.
Husson said the employees’ actions justify the suspension, whose aim is “to immediately protect the strategic, intellectual and technological assets of our company.”
The company didn’t identify the officials. Husson said the investigation will “inevitably” result in legal action.