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December sale or bust for Saab: GM

AFP/The Local · 1 Dec 2009, 21:20

Published: 01 Dec 2009 21:20 GMT+01:00

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The US auto maker indicated it was continuing to seek a buyer for Saab after Swedish luxury carmaker Koenigsegg and a Chinese partner gave up a bid due to costly delays.

But GM said it may end the nameplate if it fails to find a suitable buyer.

"The GM board of directors has received expressions of interest in Saab since the conclusion of negotiations with Koenigsegg Group AB," a GM statement said.

"The board will evaluate potential bids between now and the end of December. At that time, we will determine whether a suitable arrangement for Saab exists. If not, we will begin an orderly wind-down of the global Saab business at that time."

GM declined to name any of the potential bidders "due to non-disclosure agreements."

Koenigsegg announced in September that it had teamed up with Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Co Ltd (BAIC) to buy Saab from GM.

Story continues below…

But it still needed a €400 million ($600 million) loan from the European Investment Bank and wanted the Swedish government to act as a guarantor.

Swedish media have suggested that Saab was running short of money to continue its day-to-day operations, and doubts have flourished among experts about whether Koenigsegg would have the expertise to run a major car company.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

22:23 December 1, 2009 by Nemesis
There is obviously some sort of game being played here by GM.

The question is, what game?

It looks like they are oging to close the plant.
23:32 December 1, 2009 by 2394040
I think that the Koenigsegg deal was just a "front" to start with. Just to give GM time to put out feelers; test the waters. I'm sure the Chinese want it, actually. But they must know by now that if they wait until SAAB is shut down, then they can get it at a bargain price. And start building cars again. In Southeast Asia. With slave-labor wages, of course.

Deja Vu, anyone!

I do hope, for the sake of SAAB employees, that I am wrong. But this whole business sounded fishy from the beginning.
23:46 December 1, 2009 by Fernandis
GM has completely ruined one of the best brand in the world, shame for Sweden, Swedes and Swedish Government.....Only Swedish hands can take care of Swedish brands!
00:00 December 2, 2009 by Sue Esponte
Today's SAABs are so badge engineered that I am left wondering what any potential buyer might actually get from a purchase other than a license to manufacture off of existing GM platforms and technologies and the ability to build something unique way off in the future. Unfortunately, I don't think SAAB is long for this world...at least I have my '73 Sonett.
00:21 December 2, 2009 by aaww
but come on, what does SAAB hold now? 9 3 or 9 5 is just another shell for the chevolet malibu or buick regal.

what is the core competence of SAAB? without core competence, who would put the real bucks into this age old, less shiny company that carries heavy overhead burden.

remember, capitalist world money talks, but probably Sweden is in socialist world, so they probably does not understand the game rules here.
01:05 December 2, 2009 by GLO
aaww,you are dead on. We are in a World Market, you cant sell Grampaws old ideas. Sweden is very far behind the World Markets. You should close the bridge, shut down MTV, find a good economic leader. Old Legacy Benefits are going to kill your ability to compete.. Dont give me the old line on worker rights... The Market wont pay for your lack of productivy, Your value is now on the world stage and you have to change. They dont care. Same thing for us here in USA...
01:41 December 2, 2009 by mibrooks27
Don't you just love being blackmailed by one of America's ruthless corporate predators. This is pretty much what you can expect when dealing with *any* American (or "multinational" - those are almost always U.S. owned) business. I've lived in both the U.S. and Sweden and can tell you from personal experience that you have to be just plain stupid to do business with any American company, and god help you if you actually let them own even a tiny part of anything in your country.
01:51 December 2, 2009 by anticommie
Hey all you cry baby swedes are welcome to buy the company and make it swedish again. LOL but that would take hard work and thought something most swedes have none off.
03:20 December 2, 2009 by volvoman9
GM fired it's CEO today. Part of the blame is said to be the dragging of his feet on the Saab deal. It seems that the old guard at GM is clinging to the business as usual theory. No surprise there. The former director of AT&T is now at the helm. Maybe not time just yet to abandon all hope. And for anticommie. If you're an American then you shame the rest of us. Learn to use spell check you dolt.
10:35 December 2, 2009 by aaww

"Sweden is very far behind the World Markets" correct!!!

that's why they are catching on, globalization sets same rules everywhere.
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