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Antonov can't be an owner in Saab: EIB

AFP/The Local · 29 Jul 2011, 07:34

Published: 29 Jul 2011 07:34 GMT+02:00

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"The EIB is confirming that a loan to Saab... was given under the condition that Vladimir Antonov was not given the opportunity to take ownership in Saab," EIB spokesman Pär Isaksson told Swedish news agency TT.

He added the EIB had informed the Swedish authorities of the condition at the start of the project evaluation in 2009.

Antonov, a former shareholder in Saab's new owner Spyker and controversial figure because of concerns over his business dealings and rumours of ties to organised crime, has repeatedly said he wanted a stake in Saab.

He was approved as an investor earlier this year by Sweden's National Debt Office (Riksgälden).

The EIB gave a €400 million ($580 million) loan to the cash-strapped carmaker, and the Debt Office also had a say in ownership changes because Sweden guaranteed the loan.

Antonov's Swedish spokesman said the businessman had been informed he could not take a stake in Saab.

"We have intensified efforts to find alternative financing solutions and let this process for his approval by the bank and Sweden go, because it's completely meaningless," Lars Carlström told the TV4 West news station.

Saab's production has been stalled on and off since April as the carmaker scrambles to find the cash to pay its suppliers.

It announced Tuesday it would have to delay paying the wages of its white-collar employees.

Story continues below…

Iconic Swedish brand Saab was saved at the last minute at the beginning of 2010 when it was bought by small Dutch firm Spyker from US giant GM.

The new owner had big ambitions for Saab but the carmaker has since then lurched from one cash crisis to another.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:48 July 29, 2011 by Zeffanyx
Die the, saab.
23:45 July 29, 2011 by spy
Murky actions by the Swedish govt and the EIB stink to high hell.
04:24 July 30, 2011 by repat_xpat
Duh. I still love the pic of the SAAB union protesting GM as "General Mobsters." And now there is a real mobster running the company. How's that working out for them?
21:26 July 30, 2011 by digitalamish
EIB watches too many Hollywood movies about "organized crime". Sell SAAB to the Brussels mafia instead then...
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