Indian automaker places bid for Saab: report

Indian automaker places bid for Saab: report
A 1992 file image of the 20th Brigade of the Royal Saudi Land Forces
India's Tata Motors has placed a $350 million bid to buy bankrupt Swedish car maker Saab Automobile, a newspaper report said Tuesday, citing people it said were close to the deal.

“Tata’s global acquisition team has been in negotiations with Saab and private equity players for a prospective acquisition by its Jaguar-Land Rover unit,” the India Financial Express newspaper reported, quoting an unnamed source.

Tata Motors’ spokesman declined to comment when contacted by AFP.

Last month, Saab officials said that at least four companies had placed preliminary bids for a buy-out – most of them from outside Sweden.

Saab, owned by Dutch company Swedish Automobile (SWAN), filed for bankruptcy in December after numerous failed deals to keep it afloat.

All of Saab’s assets would be for sale, the company has said.

Tata Motors, which also makes the world’s cheapest car, the Nano, bought British luxury brands Jaguar and Land Rover from US Ford Motor in 2008 for $2.3 billion as part of its plans to expand beyond Asia.

Tata Motors is likely to face competition from China’s Youngman, which has been keen to buy Saab and is reported to have made a preliminary bid of about

$300 million.

Indian auto and farm equipment maker Mahindra and Mahindra is also reported

to have placed a bid for Saab.

However, Tata Motors denies any plans to make a move on Saab.

“That is misinformation,” Ratan Tata told AFP, speaking after the unveiling of the Indian company’s new four-seater urban electric car, the Megapixel, at the Geneva Motor Show.

“We are making no move on SAAB,” he said.

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