Press-conference April 3rd

April 3, 2012 in News

We’re waiting for the press-conference to start, both Anne-Marie and Hans are present today..


– Two intensive weeks have gone by in the sales-process. The interested parties which remain are very focused. There have been visits to the factory and many other things. We have extended the period for the interested parties (for a final bid) until the first work-day after easter.

QUESTION: How big are Saabs debts?

– Saab has very big debts, its in the figures of 12-13 billion SEK, say Hans Bergqvist.

– There are several issues and questions from the interested parties that needs to be worked out, this is what we are working on right now…

QUESTION: Will all the final interested parties place a final offer?

– Yes

QUESTION: How many are they?

– We will not say

According to the administrators, the remaining bidders are interested in producing cars in Trollhättan…

QUESTION: Do the interested parties remaining want to build cars with the brand name SAAB?

– If there is a continuation under the brand name Saab is not something the administrators can answer, but all parties are interested in building cars with Saab technology.

The administrators also reveal that they have been in discussions with GM to get a real answer from GM on their position, what that position actually is, is not yet revealed though.

– There are a number of transactions within Saab, prior to the bankruptcy, which from a bankruptcy perspective are wrong. We are looking more into this right now, say Hans Bergqvist.

QUESTION: Do you fear that a lot of ex Saab employees are gone?

– We have kept a number of loyal and great technical people on our pay-roll to take care of the factory right now, but a lot of the technical know-how is still left in the region in other forms.

– They remain available for the interested parties and can be re-employed either directly or as consultants.

Next tuesday the estate inventory documentation will be made available. (this is usually a public document and available to anyone)

– The press-conference is now over, next one will be on the 17th of April.

109 responses to Press-conference April 3rd

  1. Fingers crossed for a PC without to many “no comments”…

  2. And let’s not all keep hitting “F5″ … the page will update automatically :-)

    • No, actually it will not, the live-blogg tool crashed big time last time and all of the contents disappeared with the crash, so this time we do not trust that kind of tools, we do it the old fashioned way =P

      • Tim, why did you reply to ryan? If he insists on not hitting F5, he’ll never see your reply! 😀

      • Actually, I figured out I was wrong about about 5 minutes ago. My apologies to everyone who were scratching their heads wondering why live updates were not happening :-)

  3. Please ask when the winning bidder will be announced!

  4. Encore une conf pour pas grand chose !

  5. Yet another delay, another waste of time – do these administrators actually know anything?!

    • I think they do. I remember the amount of paperwork needed the last time Saab was saved (never thought I’d have to say or write that).
      It was a LOT.

      Generic Motors are still there…

      • Yeah, the fact that discussions with GM is on-going is quite interesting in my mind.

        • Yeah, the fact that discussions with GM is on-going is quite interesting in my mind.

          What if the discussion consists of this?

          Saab Administrator: “What is your position on Saab?”
          General Motors: “Our position is unchanged. We will not transfer licensing to any new owners of Saab.”
          SA: “Under what condition would you consider changing your position?”
          (SA issues press release saying negotiations with GM are ongoing)
          SA: “Please?”
          SA: “Please?

          Okay, all kidding aside, do you really have your hopes up that GM will budge from their position? Until Guy came along, if Victor is to be trusted, they had a deal to move forward. We’ll likely never know the full story, but something Guy did queered the deal and made it fall apart. I’m not saying Guy is to blame for the implosion of Saab – both GM and VM are to blame for that; GM for picking the worst suitor to buy Saab, and VM for putting too much funding into Phoenix and not a tenth as much as they needed to into advertising and producing enough 9-5 and 9-4 units to reach dealer lots. HOW long of a backlog was there for 9-5 and 9-4 orders and how many orders never got filled? It was a clustef*** all the way around.

          Of course, hindsight is 20/20, as they say, so it’s easy to sit here and say “Saab should have done this” and “Saab should have done that” and maybe it’s not fair to criticize VM for his failures.

          • Well, that hardly falls under the category of being a “discussion”. If the administrators mentioned there is some actual discussion happens: I presume that they mean one that isn’t content-free :-)

            So the jury will be out on how GM will be involved going forward until the sale happens and a plan is announced. As for lumping GM and VM into the same category and giving GL a free-pass: I couldn’t disagree more. If you don’t believe me, just pay attention to the court battles I fully expect to unfold in the not-so-distant future.

            • Did I give Guy a free pass? No. I’m saying that if Victor is telling the truth (and I believe he is) then there was a done deal that only needed ink, and then Guy went in and threw a wrench into the works.

    • you should know that k-egg spent over 3 months just making their business plan when they thought about buying Saab, these things do not go very fast… lots of small details that need to be worked out, and when a small group is working with several parities it takes a lot of time. You might recall the amount of details that GM had to work with when selling Saab to just one company, spyker… that took months as well…

      so take it easy, things will work out! =)

      • so take it easy, things will work out! =)

        You know more than we do, that is obvious. :)

        • It should take months to implement a start-up plan. It should not take this long to determine which party makes the purchase. Another delay. Just great. How much are they being paid again? And are those lunches free?

  6. and on and on and on and on……..

  7. So the question needs to be asked: If GM clarifies or reconsiders its position to allow licensing of the platforms (and this is a *massive* “IF”) and the new deadline for bids is now 10 April, do you think Brightwell would reconsider making a bid? The more bidders, the better the chance that Saab will survive (and continue to make petrol and diesel cars)!

  8. Very promising news on GM and The remaining parties, and extremely annoying numbers.
    Where has all the money gone, 14 Billion SEK?

    Has a new owner any obligation to hire old staff? I think not, they must have the liberty to staff their own company they think suit their company and business model. Sounds like a healthy idea to have some new influx of ideas for a future strong Saab Automobile brand.

    Good luck to all you bidders. Remember that one of the biggest values that has no “real” number is the loyal owners/prospective buyers around the globe. There is a place for a small iconic brand, making around 100000 cars per year.

    • +1! …. I for one am sticking with Saab for the long haul. Let’s make this happen!

    • “Where has all the money gone, 14 Billion SEK?”

      It’s not “real” money lost. I think at least half is convertible shares owned by GM. The “post GM” debt is mostly the EIB loan (SEK 2-3 billion?) and supplier debt (SEK???).

      • GM’s shares are not debt – at least not in the bankruptcy terms. they were a form of equity, I think.

    • Agreed. I have suddenly received a boost of optimism! Saab all the way!!

    • I believe they do not have any obligations to hire old staff …. however I understand some old SAAB engineering staff set up consultancy companies so I believe the know-how is still available (as the Administrators said) and this is encouraging …. the new SAAB will also be a “lighter” organisation from a fixed cost point of view …..

      I just hope they move quickly now ….. we have a say in Italy “while the doctors discuss about the perfect cure, the patient dies…” I just hope their search for the “best money” does not waste valuable time ….

  9. About GM: In ttela´s article about the Press-conference the text is saying something like: “The administrators HAVE BEEN in talks with GM and know their position” … So that does not (necessarily) mean that there are new negotiations with GM !!!
    Personally I think that GM are determined to do what they can to close Saab definitely. – Maybe even by pretending will to negotiate just to pull out time – like they did with Brightwell. Thus my hope is that the administrators know the true GM-position and have informed the bidders about it and that the bidders (especially the coming “winner” ,-) ) have some viable plans, not including GM-“rights” (to Saab-developed technology… )

  10. I am confused.

    Is there a date upon which the new owner of Saab will be announced or not? Nobody asked that question.

    Originally, if I recall correctly, the date upon which the whole process was supposed to be over and the fate of the estate announced was April 16.

    Now it just seems to be going on and on, and on. I don’t necessarily have a problem with that, because I agree that this must be a time-consuming process and it needs to be done properly.

    But it would be helpful if someone here at SU would state clearly and categorically that there is in fact no deadline as such, so then we can check in with SU at sensible intervals instead of wasting time constantly looking for news that isn’t coming.

    Or are they going to announce the final result and the ‘winner’ on April 17?

    • You’re not the only one who’s confused Allan. I’d say the Receivers are more than a little confused. Heck, why don’t we just make it January of 2013? Give them more time to get it right. A couple thousand hours apparently isn’t enough—-if they have a whole year, they’ll REALLY know which bid is best I guess.

    • There’s no date set for a final announcement. There’s no coronation. We have no info about timetables. I think that’s been pretty clear. I’m sort of confused as to why some people here think it’s more important to give Saab fans a definitive date than give the appropriate parties reasonable time to come to the best outcome not only for themselves but the process.

      Calm down people, definitive news sure isn’t coming for a few weeks.

      • That’s a very patronising response, Jeff, but never mind. My issue is that I am fairly sure April 16 had been cited here a while ago as being the date upon which the fate of the estate will have been decided and announced. But I could be wrong.

  11. One bit of tangible info: the deadline for handing in final bids is now April 10 for all bidders. After that, the bids will have to be evaluated and compared. That iscvertainly going to consume quite some time so the announcement of the winning bidder and the commencement of attempts to revive Saab as a car builder (if that is what the new owners plan to do; there is still that electric Damocles’ sword hanging over Saab) is still up in the air. Could be weeks, could be months. Takes too long :-( .

    My take on the situation, anyway.


    • Yes, Ivo I noticed that 10 April too – which was originally a March deadline :-) I agree with your general observation. That will at least let us know we are in to the ‘final stage’ whiich may take weeks or months… Sigh.

      The electric-car-only option, in my humble opinion, is not necessarily a Sword of Damocles. There could be a Saab-built-and-branded small electric car that is actually a capable little vehicle and they could build up to larger and more long-legged cars from there as battery tech improves in the next five years.

      • As far as I know, there will be little battery tech improvement in the next 5 years. Maybe enough to extend the range by (ballpark) a few dozen kms in real life but certainly not enough to make a full-electric vehicle suitable for normal day-to-day use. To me, it also seems frankly ridiculous to expect any commercial success from a means of transport that needs hours and hours of recharging at virtually non-existent charging stations after having driven maybe 60 miles. As long as this state of affairs continues, such a vehicle simply isn’t economically and commercially viable. And I don’t even take into account the pricing. Twice the price of a conventional automobile for that kind of performance? Come on.

        But I do consider further development of full-EV’s under the Saab flag a logical sideline and a promising future lineup extension next to building maximally clean conventional and/or gas- or diesel-electric hybrid Saabs.


        • Apparently they are saying as little as 5 years before the next generation of car batteries causes a big leap forward. But perhaps you are right, it is still too much of a risk right now.

          Anyway I agree fully with this bit, which would be my preferred outcome from this process: “But I do consider further development of full-EV’s under the Saab flag a logical sideline and a promising future lineup extension next to building maximally clean conventional and/or gas- or diesel-electric hybrid Saabs.”

          • Apparently they are saying as little as 5 years before the next generation of car batteries causes a big leap forward.

            That’s what they said 40 years ago.


            Battery breakthroughs are nearer than you think.

            • Jeff, I have just taken a good look at Envia’s website and associated links.

              It is fascinating on a number of levels. I don’t understand the chemistry much, but what little I do understand is very impressive. A safe and cheaply made battery pack giving a 300-mile range has been achieved and is being upscaled for market-ready production as we speak. Also the global aspect of the business – Indians, Americans, Chinese working together – is very interesting.

              It seems to me people can either drive their old 9000s down to the beach and bury their heads in the sand, or …

            • I’m not -yet- as excited as you are. Breakthroughs have been announced before but didn’t materialize. Facts: Half of the Envia battery is about 2 years from its final development stages, the other half runs 2 years behind that. Then the whole thing has to be made marketable since it’s purely experimental at this stage. And it has to be made safe enough to not cause the same fire trouble when damaged. The safe-when-damaged claims on the website concern the -envisaged- product at its current stage of development, not Envia’s hoped-for end product itself since that requires 4 more years of time-to-market. If it ever gets there.

              Final doubt: Envia is backed by venture capital and part-owned by GM. 😉 . Sounds familiar?

              I hope you will forgive me if I say that I’ll believe their claims when I see the end product actually do in a car what they promise. Until then, it’s just a bit of a -well written, I’ll give them that- PR spin as far as I’m concerned.

              So, for the foreseeable future, I guess I’ll just continue driving my old 9000 -I actually do drive one- to the beach. And anywhere else, including places further away than, say, 300 miles, while basking in the certainty that it will get me there without having to break off the trip for half a day after each short stretch of road.


              • I’m as skeptical as you are until we actually see a working production unit on the assembly lines. They’re claiming 18 month availability for production, which as far as I can tell they seem pretty able to achieve given their certified testing from third parties. They’re using the same 45 cells on the C/2 cycle that is used in the auto sector, the difference here is chemistry. The fact that it’s using established li-ion tech with less rare earth is encouraging too. As a start up, making bold claims is nothing new, but assigning timetables assures us that there’s a date verifiable for investors to bank on. They’d be pretty foolish to set expectations too high.

                I just hope that Saab gets another lifeline with a company who can leverage the best the industry has to offer, not a proprietary battery or propulsion tech that limits its potential. I’m with everyone on an all of the above approach, but I side more with those interested in pushing the comfort zone into electricity and doing something brave, new, and destabilizing– exactly the reasons why Saab became such a cult icon, for being technically unique.

                • Oh, but don’t get me wrong, I am as pro-electric as the next person. If there is a future for a viable electric Saab then, by all means, build it. It’s just that I have trouble with claims like ‘it’s just around the corner’, only to either never hear anything about the ‘revolutionary breakthrough’ again or to find out that the announced megainnovation is nothing more than just another variation on the same theme. There has ben too much of that already and I’m sick and tired of hearing every other month about nonexistent revolutions and EV’s that can run from here to Tokyo while in reality they stop after a few dozen miles and require half a day to get recharged.Or about some other battery tech breakthrough that catches fire when scratched in a fender bender. I just wish that those people would keep shtumm until they have something that actually works as it should.

                  And I’m also pretty sceptical about someone buying Saab for the sole purpose of building pie-in-the-sky products there that will be unmarketable for at least 5 and probably many years more. How will the brand survive until then? Or will they buy the remains of a once proud brand just to score a few billion for research that leads nowhere for the foreseeable future?


                  • It has just been announced there is a Japanese prototype electric car on the road that has covered 218 miles between charges. It is called the Sim Wil, and it is a proper car. The styling leaves a lot to be desired but that is irrelevant: the range is very impressive. It seems to be a fast car, too. The range is more than double what the Leaf can do, so it seems ever more clear to me that great strides are actually being made as we speak.

                    • Oh good, so I can make it halfway to Pennsylvania then find an outlet to plug into and wait 8-16 hours before I can continue my trip. That’s without climate control, wipers, lights, window defrosters, etc.

                      Thanks, but I’ll stick with fossil fuels which are actually practical.

                    • 218 miles using the Japanese JC-08 cycle for measure. The Nissan Leaf does 73 miles on EPA and 124 miles on the JC-08. That would make the Sim Wil good for about 120 miles on the EPA cycle.

                      I wonder what that range would be on a cold and wet winter night. You know, when you need heating, A/C and ventilation, lights, unimportant stuff like that. Like 60 miles maybe?

                      Another ‘revolutionary development’ that exists in the eyes of PR managers only? I guess I’ll just keep driving the old 9000 to the beach.


    • The electric car thing is a pipe dream—-if that’s how they intend to “save” Saab or repay creditors, they’re idiots of the first order. Restarting production of conventional cars—-the only path to maintain most of Saab’s customer base and attract new customers—-is being crippled the longer this darn process takes. Everyone knows that, but it’s being dragged out, and out, and out—-anyway. I’m past the point of being “impatient” and I accept it for what it is—-a failure of the party that was supposed to be working in the best interest of creditors and the public. They’ve betrayed the public trust in my opinion, by not moving in an expedient manner to make this work. I am not saying that all is lost—-but it’s clear that they’ve dug a whole for any new owner to dig out of—-much deeper than if this had been put to rest already. I’ll say it again: In business, decisions worth more than this are made in a more efficient and faster method, constantly. These people are either in over their heads by a mile, or they are deliberately making this more complicated than it is. Sorry—-but to argue that “it’s complicated and takes time” is ridiculous at this point. There is a very finite group of companies involved in this. Determining the one with the best offer isn’t as difficult as they’re making it. Giving clear deadlines and stick with them—-and announcing it publickly—would have been the right thing to do. Any company who is serious would have gotten the bid done and turned it in. It should then take weeks, not months, to make an announcement. I’d love to know what their compensation is and what controls have been placed on them to wrap this up. What a joke.

  12. @SU staff: could we please please pretty please have the text correction facility back? I really really hate leaving typos :-( .


    • …and the World Map feature that showed reader locations! Was it removed due to some sort of privacy issue?

      • It was removed because of a bug, it used up RAM without letting go of it again which dragged down the performance of the server =( worked fine for about a week until it had used up all the memory.. =( Took us a while to figure out that it was that one which caused the server to crash a number of times…

    • Done! =)

      • I just tried to edit my comment for the second time, having spotted an error that I neglected to correct the first time. I get the remark ‘You aren’t permitted to edit this comment’. Can the comment editor window be used only once per comment? Or is there some other cause?


  13. A new Easter miracle?

  14. Could it be that the GM connection is only to use the current 9.3 body with the new electric tec from Japan ? Or would that be too much of a competition to the volt/ampera. Or the Japanese and GM are going to work together on new electric cars…. I want a turbo. Anyway , nothing is new and nothing is lost. Yet. Mahindra please?

  15. Yes I agree Ivo, can we please have chell specker back please!!….

    • See, that is why!…. just my daft sense of humour guys….sorry.

      • RS said on April 3, 2012

        Martin, it works if you type directly into the reply column. If you copy paste text from somewhere else you need to ‘go through it’ with your cursor for the program to see the sepll… spelling errors.

  16. YESSSS!!! The correction tool is back as of a few minutes ago. Thank you.

    And I have used it, too 😉 .


  17. I really never understood why GM would not want to license its IP again if the terms were restrictive as to China or even for a set time (during which a buyer could develop its own IP and use the GM designs as a stop gap – understand this would be incredibly expensive). I wonder how far those discussions with GM have gone. I am not optimistic on that front whatsoever.

    I would like to see Saab reopen as much as anyone here, but have no reason to think that will happen given the culmination of all the events over the past year and the present economy in Europe.

    • I agree with you. This is the worst sort of economy to relaunch a car brand in. Makes more sense to acquire the intellectual property and rights now for cheap then perfect the technology for a while elsewhere. If you happen to already be a car manufacturer and can integrate it into your existing brand that would be much easier.

      The market for near-luxury cars isn’t all that great in most countries right now. Especially near-luxury cars that don’t have a clearly defined (to the general public anyway) difference that really sets them appart from the well established brands. If the next Saab 900 can be launched in 3 – 4 years and has distinctive features (e.g. electric, plugin turbo-hybrid etc.) I think the economy might have improved enough for Saab to have a good relaunch instead of a tepid one.

  18. What a roller coaster. Can’t wait to see what happens so I can see if I made the right choice to ditch the 2011 Combi when I did. The Volvo S60 is a far better car in every aspect than the dated 2011 93, except the Saab was 5x more fun to drive. The Volvo feels like a whale compared to the Saab, which felt like a nimble race horse.

    • I really do hope Saab comes through and they come back with the all-new 93 and an all new 94, 95. Would purchase another Saab from a healthy Saab in a heartbeat. The connection with the driver is unsurpassed by anything I’ve ever driven, although I’ve only had a Chevy, Mitsubishi, Subaru, and now a Volvo.

    • Eric, isn’t this the only thing that counts? A car is something you DRIVE, who cares for other aspects (and I would like to know how the S60 is better than a decade-old Saab). I think I’d still buy my 2011 today, if I were in the market and there were 2012s available. I’d only go for factory-fitted bluetooth and power seats this time.

      • Honestly “the drive” is only one factor in buying a car. The Saab’s steering wheel had the perfect grip and texture. The car was responsive and easy to manuver at all speeds. It was easy to park and I felt a rush when I pushed down on the throttle.

        The Saab also had horrible creaks in the entire car- both the dash, the rear/trunk, and worst of all… the seats. Nothing like driving a $37,000 car to have the driver’s seat creak into a turn (which started at around mile 300, sadly I had no warranty to get it repaired). The design of the car was beautiful, but the materials made it feel cheap and dated.

        The Volvo on the other hand has a thick slick wheel that makes it harder to grip. It has a much softer suspension and is silent compared to the Saab. Acceleration is herky-jerky compared to the Saab, and it feels harder to manuver and park. I love the 2012 S60, but if Saab can take the feel of their 93 SS/SC and update it with premium materials and modern tech, I would switch back the minute the Volvo is paid off.

        • FWLIW: I drove a 2008 9-3 SC for its first 30000 km, and there were no creaks heard during the 18 months I had it.

          Would be interesting to figure out the difference of that one and the one you had. Did you approach your dealer with these issues?

          • Yes, I did. I took it to them a few weeks after I bought it to fix the rear seat that would jerk foward when I stopped- the locking mechanism did not “click” in when putting the seats up.

            I then took it to them (after the bankruptcy, they agreed to look at it for free) to diagnose the creaks and squeaks in the trunk area that drove me crazy, they had it the entire day and “couldn’t find anything” despite putting it on the lift. I told them about the seats but they said I’d have to come back and have them road test it, but I would have to pay out of pocket for any work they do. Screw that.

            The Turbo X was my *dream car* and I was so proud to buy a 2011 Combi that was similar to it. It turned out to be a nightmare. The Saab had as much interior noise/creaks as the 2008 Subaru Impreza I traded in for it.

            The dealer I purchased my car from went from a no fire-sale policy to clearing out their inventory at 50% off. I spent $29,500 on my 2011 93 2.0T Combi,4 months later they listed a 2011 93x fully loaded for $26,000 before they closed down. I am sure someone bought that 93x, they’re amazing cars for that price.

            And despite being burned as a customer, I woudl STILL buy another Saab if they can become a healthy company again. Even though I ownly owned mine for 5 months, the car fit -me- as a driver, I had a great connection with that car that is very hard to describe.

  19. To the tune of “Never ending story…. lalalalalalalalalalalalaa”

    • You said it. With a new script by Franz Kafka.

      I am going against my own advice to be patient, but now I am starting to feel like the Bill Paxton grunt in Aliens. I am desperately wanting the dropped linen followed by the grinnin’ – but fear the worst “Game over man, game over!”

  20. 13 billion Swedish kronor = 1.96 billion U.S. dollars. That’s a lot of money for debt. I imagine that about $1bn of it was left over from the GM days. At least $500 m must be from the shutdown. WHich leaves another $500m which is probably due to suppliers.

    • Ouch. Saab is worth more dead than alive.

      • No it isn’t. Insofar as they can be the debts get repaid from the proceeds of the sale of the business that is in the hands of the Receivers. The obligation to pay accumulated debts does not carry forward to the assets that are sold to the new owners, who will be purchasing a business clean of past obligations. In effect Saab died to rid itself of debts. It will be resurrected into an ethereal plane where past debts are meaningless.

  21. A couple of thoughts on GM.
    I feel that this news can be spun in a positive way for SAAB’s future with respect to restart of production.

    I would think that GM is willing to play with certain bidders, ie BMW, Mahindra. I would put money on GM informing the administrators that they will not cooperate with any Chinese related bidders, while stating that they are open to discussions with others. If GM is playing this game, I would see this as being difficult to the administrators.

    • P said on April 3, 2012

      Doesn’t seem too difficult to me, they have been quite frank all along…

      • the difficult part would be filtering out which bid is better than the other… I would think that they would have to weigh GM friendly bids in a different manner than what the Chinese would give…

  22. Maybe Saab will be resurrected on Easter. We must all cross our fingers. Secular humor.

  23. Hope the very best. Cross easter eggs

  24. GRIFFIN UP !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    SAAB ALIVE FOREVER !!!!!!!!!!!

  25. “12 to 13 billions SEK” can not be the current debt only. Just NOT possible. I don’t believe that.

    In a process of liquidation, all the liabilities shall be counted and not only current debt. So they must have added Equity parts (which is not a debt but has to be counted in a liquidation process in case of an excess of the valuable assets over the liabilities to be shared between equity partners) 320M$ GM preference shares, unpaid BEI loan, various loans from various third parties (chinese, russian and dutch not to mention others) etc.

    So 12 to 13 B SEK is not Saab’s current debt but more various liabilities items. Am I wrong?

  26. GM IP is ancient. All the turbo technology and XWD tech comes straight from Saab. GM Ecotec engines are ancient technology when you compare it to the likes of BMWs new N20 turbo engines.

    In all honesty with debts like these Saab is as dead as the dodo and a part of all this is GM fault as it seemed to offload all of its bad debt onto Saab’s books. Karma is coming GM!!

    • The amount of SAAB’s debts will not be the concern of a buyer as the buyer will not be assuming any of those debts.

      • The amount of SAAB’s debts will not be the concern of a buyer as the buyer will not be assuming any of those debts.

        Legally, no.

        Business relationship wise, it is very much a concern. If you had a small business manufacturing a key component for the 9-3 and have an open invoice for hundreds of thousands, are you seriously going to do business with Saab even under new management if that invoice isn’t paid, at least in part to cover the raw material cost? Doubtful.

        If Saab is purchased wholly intact with the intent of restarting production, they need to generate as much good will as possible. Otherwise, it will be stillborn. Warranties need to be covered, currently-unavailable parts need to be produced and delivered, and customer service at the dealer has to be absolutely stellar.

        • If the buyer has strong finances I don´t see a problem. Maybe some suppliers wan’t “cash on delivery” to start with so the new owner must put in enough capital into SAAB.

  27. Has anyone other than me, a thrilled and proud owner of a 2010 9-3 convertible — which, of course, means I’m now driving a car with no warranty protection — heard any discussion of whether any new purchaser of the company is obligated to re-instate the coverage for the Spyker-era cars that GM yanked? I suspect the law says a new purchaser of the company does NOT have to do that — but wondering if anyone out there has read anything about this . . . Thks. – Ed

    • At least in the USA, it depends on how the bankruptcy is handled. In some cases if a company is purchased wholly intact, including assets and liabilities, the new company would be responsible for warranty service. If the assets only are purchased and the liabilities are cancelled, the company would be under no obligation to honor any warranty.

      However: Right now in the marketplace Saab’s name is mud and credibility is less than zero. In order to gain any traction, advertising needs to be very, very good and convincing, customer service at dealers and at regional offices needs to be beyond reproach, pre-existing models need to be fully supported (with currently-unavailable parts being produced and shipped) and warranties need to be honored. Otherwise, any “new Saab” would suffer the same fate as old Saab because right now it is a marque that is considered trustworthy, despite the excellent overall product quality.

      • Thanks, Kimberly. That was my I-wasn’t-totally-sure-assessment as well. Hope the new purchaser is smart enough to think the way you do. It’s both good marketing (my field), good ethics and great customer service. Fingers crossed.

    • I have a feeling that whatever happens, someone will honor the 2010/2011 warranty situation. Either Saab will use the money from selling assets to pay a 3rd party, GM will do it in good faith, or a new owner will reinstate them.

      It is a *horrible* feeling to own a new car and not have a warranty that was part of the purchase price. I feel sorry for all 2010/2011 owners, and it made me nervous enough to trade the Saab in before anything could go wrong in it.

  28. This is a pretty worrying phrase that hasn’t been touched on here, yet –

    There are a number of transactions within Saab, prior to the bankruptcy, which from a bankruptcy perspective are wrong.

    It’s not exactly uncommon for some dodgy dealings to occur during the chaos of a bankruptcy, and with some of the players involved and the nature of the SWAN/Saab setup, I’m concerned at what they may discover. Hopefully it’s nothing more than a few simple discrepancies, but they do seem to have made a point of it.

    • I agree. It is quite disturbing.

      • Indeed it is; just hope it does not create additional issues for the bidders. If really serious it should be handled separately.

  29. April 17 is a good day – my anniversary.. I am thinking a good announcement may happen that day.

  30. Good luck to all bidders! May the best bidder win!

  31. Hi there!

    After looking around on the net you can see that US automakers have a big intersest for the Indian market.

    Could it be so that GM would let the licenses go to Mahindra just to open a door to India??

    Have anyone seen or heard such rumors?

    • No, but I HAVE heard that GM made a HUGE profit.
      And at the same time Opel made a HUGE loss. And – again – nobody notices that Opel IS GM, not some separate company far, far away. Like Sweden.
      GM are doing it again.

      May GM crash and burn.

  32. Good luck to all the bidders. I wish to see an end to these difficult times and lets get some people back to work on a great company, which produces great products!

  33. Kim,

    Can I get an Amen?!?!

    I love when people assume things like “218 miles” to acceptable.

    Your illustration is perfect!

    Let’s see, I put a over 50,000 miles on my “work SAAB” and I have only had that one for 10 months! That is a 5,000 mile a month average (60k a year) which is basically 215 miles PER DAY (that car is not driven on weekends).

    Yup a 218 mile EV. Ohhhh. Goodie. Where do I sign up?

    I won’t even get into the fact that our grid here in there Northeasterm US cannot handle the recharging.

    I stick with normal and useful cars for now.

    • Even if 218 miles were acceptable for your 215 mile “average” day on the road (whether you’re a tech, traveling salesman, or just have a ridiculously long commute) then something as simple as a detour to a clothes shop or a supermarket can leave you stranded. That is an unacceptable margin.

  34. Again you are dead on Kim.

    I own 2 companies; one is a consulting business and and then a retail store business with 3 locations and working on opening 2 more before the year is out.

    Your assessment is correct.

    Add to you possibilities an “actual” detour – and I live in New England and the ever present traffic and road construction around here and i cannot even count the number of times i have done 300+ miles in a day

    I can safely say the 218 range is not even close to viable.