The process with China and preparing for GM continues

As you may have read in news reports earlier today, discussions are ongoing with our Chinese partners as we try to negotiate a solution that will satisfy all parties.

Reuters:

China’s Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co said it still wanted to invest in ailing car maker Saab after General Motors said on Monday it would stop supplying components and technology if Pang Da Automobile and Youngman succeeded with their acquisition bid.

Youngman director Rachel Pang said on Wednesday the company will do “everything they can” to support Saab’s survival. She told Swedish news agency TT Youngman still wants to buy Saab.

“Of course we do. If you are afraid you cannot succeed in business. There are always difficulties. One has to find solutions, not just give up,” she was quoted by TT as saying.

And the Wall St Journal:

Saab Automobile AB said Wednesday that it is discussing a new ownership structure with its Chinese investors, trying to save plans of selling the cash-starved company after former owner General Motors Co. objected to the deal.

“The purpose of these discussions is to find an ownership structure that everyone can agree on,” said Saab Automobile spokesperson Gunilla Gustavs, noting that the proposed 100% Chinese ownership “was an issue for GM.” Ms. Gustavs didn’t provide further details of the discussions.

From an internal point of view here at Saab, we continue to pursue all of our current objectives, which include but aren’t limited to these discussions.

Since GM’s statement on Monday night, we continue to work with Youngman and Pang Da to prepare to respond to GM’s questions on the proposed sale transaction of Saab Automobile AB to Pang Da and Youngman.

The Saab management team is preparing an in-depth communication package that clarifies the new business plan and the intentions for the future. The purpose is to present this to GM and clarify the intentions with the operations in China, thus seeking GM’s consent for the transaction through discussion and negotiations.

In parallel, the other processes continue, both those regarding approvals and those referring to the reorganization. Project Cheetah goes on as well, with the aim to create a new cost structure for Saab next year.

We had a setback, but in the Saab tradition, we keep moving on toward the goal. If our recent dealer tours through Germany and Austria are anything to go by, then the product and the customers demand it.

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5 Comments

  1. I can only agree with your concluding line. The products and the customers simply demand the survival of Saab. And thus, Saab will survive. Just as always… 🙂

  2. 1/3 SWAN, 1/3 GM, 1/3 BMW.
    Mats Fagerhag becomes CEO, JAJ sits on the Board of Directors.
    Airplane logo returns.
    Done 😉

  3. There are a lot of really smart people at the table, trying to find a solution.  There are a lot of really eager/anxious potential customers, ready to buy from Saab again if there is reasonable assurance of a stable future.  I have to believe something can be hammered out to keep the brand alive.  Negotiations are never easy, but I think there is a “just right” outcome that might not give every party exactly what they want—-but will give them enough to get a deal done.    

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