SHARE
COPY LINK
SAAB BANKRUPTCY BATTLE

GENERAL MOTORS

GM ‘won’t support’ new plans to save Saab

General Motors (GM) said on Saturday it cannot accept any of the proposed solutions presented so far to help save Swedish automaker Saab Automobile, which continues to teeter on the brink of bankruptcy.

GM 'won't support' new plans to save Saab

In an email statement issued on Saturday, GM spokesperson James Cain said Saab’s new proposals were “not meaningfully different” from previous solutions which GM had already rejected.

“Each proposal results either directly or indirectly in the transfer of control and/or ownership of the company in a manner that would be detrimental to GM and its shareholders,” said Cain.

“As such, GM cannot support any of these proposed alternatives.”

Speaking with Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet (SvD), Saab CEO Victor Muller countered by saying that “GM doesn’t have anything to say” on a deal in which Chinese automaker Youngman would receive “zero percent” of the shares in Saab Automobile.

“The statement obviously comes from hearsay and is meant to negatively affect Monday’s court proceedings,” Muller told SvD.

On Monday, Vänersborg District Court will convene to decide on whether Saab’s reorganization should be terminated or extended.

The court will also examine the question of whether, Guy Lofalk, the current administrator appointed by the court to oversee Saab’s business reorganization, should have his term extended or if he should be replaced by Lars Söderqvist.

Citing sources within Saab, SvD reported the company plans to present a plan to the court on Monday whereby the Swedish automaker would launch a technology development company in the Netherlands, half of which would be owned by Youngman.

“I don’t understand at all why GM would say something like this,” Söderqvist told the TT news agency.

“The latest proposal isn’t formulated in such a way as to require approval from GM.”

If GM’s statement stems from a misunderstanding of some sort, Söderqvist is convinced that GM will be supplied with the information it needs.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

CARS

Former Swedish Saab bosses appear in court

Swedish car maker Saab's former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson and the firm's former head lawyer Kristina Geers have appeared in court in Vänersborg in west Sweden, accused of falsifying financial documents shortly before the company went bankrupt in 2011.

Former Swedish Saab bosses appear in court
Saab's former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson. Photo: Karin Olander/TT
The pair are accused of falsifying the paperwork at the height of the Swedish company's financial difficulties at the start of the decade.
 
A third person – who has not been named in the Swedish media – is accused of assisting them by issuing false invoices adding up to a total of 30 million kronor ($3.55m).
 
According to court documents, the charges relate to the firm's business in Ukraine and the paperwork in question was signed just before former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson resigned.
 
Both Jonsson and Saab's former head lawyer Kristina Geers have admitted signing the papers but denied knowledge of the Ukranian firm implicated in the case.
 
All three suspects deny all the charges against them.
 

Saab's former head lawyer Kristina Geers. Photo:  Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT
 
Saab filed for bankruptcy at the end of 2011, after teetering on the edge of collapse for nearly two years.
 
Chief prosecutor Olof Sahlgren told the court in Vänersborg on Wednesday that the alleged crimes took place in March 2011, when Saab was briefly owned by the Dutch company Spyker Cars.
  
It was eventually bought by National Electric Vehicle Sweden (Nevs), a Chinese-owned company after hundreds of staff lost their jobs.
 
The car maker, which is based in west Sweden, has struggled to resolve serious financial difficulties by attracting new investors since the takeover.
 
In October 2014 it announced it had axed 155 workers, close to a third of its workforce.
 
Since 2000, Saab automobile has had no connection with the defence and aeronautics firm with the same name. It only produces one model today, the electric 9-3 Aero Sedan, mainly targeting the Chinese market.