The Backside of Tactics

A week ago we were extremely eager to hear who will buy Saab. After weeks of waiting news outlets reported that the deal was about to be signed. As our friends at saabblog.net wrote yesterday even the Vänersborg court had on the 24th of May sent out letters to the creditors saying that most likely be only the legally preferred creditors will get some money. Another indicaion that NEVS was on the home stretch in this deal.

But now things went quiet again and we are asking ourselves what happened. Of course Youngman’s new bid is one issue in this. But to get a more complete picture of recent events we have to go back in time a bit.

A few weeks ago the receivers came up with an idea: they untied the big Saab package and made seven smaller ones. Their tactic was to get more money for the creditors through that and they expected that either Youngman or Mahindra would come and buy all those small packages together.

As we know Youngman were sent home as hey could not show the money. And Mahindra? Well, they have a huge interest to buy Saab but not at any price. I can imagine they were not too happy with the way the receivers tried to raise the price so the went to passive mode.

Just at that moment NEVS showed up, picked some of those seven packages and made a bid for those. While we do not know which ones they took, this of course explains why they made it to the finals with a bid that seemed to be pretty low. At this moment the NEVS tactics seemed to beat those of the receivers.

The deal was practically done. For the first time in months some info leaked. While we were waiting for the announcement negotiations continued. Maybe as some sources say it was about making some final adjustmens to the price but you can be pretty sure it was just a low single digit number of hours from the signing of a final deal when Youngman’s new bid spoilt everything.

Maybe NEVS should have acted quicker but personally I feel that it is pretty sick that the Swedish bankrupcy law forces the receivers to examine that last minute bid. In my view there should be a point in time when they could shut the process to make a deal ready for signing.

In the end this bid evaluation reloaded prolongs the process and annoys those who were about to sign a deal. I even dare to say that this is one of he main goals that youngman had. They lack credibility because of their track record in the whole process ever since they showed up a year ago. I do not see them become a frontrunner if there are other options.

I won’t start explaining my reservations about Youngman again, if you didn’t do already you can find it here. The fact that they showed up just costs time. It actually reminds me a bit of the time before bankrupcy when they always sent just enough money to preserve Saab from dying but not a cent more.

I really hope that NEVS stays in the game and maybe even Mahindra gets out of their passive mode. I still see the possibility for a good solution for Saab. But there is not another half year of time to find it. Tactics are a nessesary thing in business but there is also a time to fight out in the open. And I feel the time is now.

saabman
Member
4 years 3 months ago
In other words, the receivers got greedy (albeit not for themselves, presumably) and in the process may have really messed things up by unintentionally elbowing M & M out. Now they don’t have a buyer for Saab Parts, except for Youngman whom they don’t seem to favor in general, and they end up making less for Saab’s creditors than they might have if they had refrained from engaging in last-minute overreaching. I am still hoping for the best and trying to keep an open mind about whoever prevails, be it NEVS, Youngman, or M & M. Even if not for… Read more »
Marque
Member
4 years 3 months ago

900% agree

Nate 9-3
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Did the receivers outsmart themselves? Guy Lofal much?

I don’t see how any of this is “good” for Sweden. You sell SAAB for less piecemeal, the potential buyer now only pays legally peferred creditors, and SAAB parts is not part of the package to service and bridge over an insanely-loyal customer base?

zippy
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Spot on there till72. They threw their toys out of the playpen then come back at the last minute. The bankruptcy court should have told then to get lost!! Kinda makes me angry. No it REALLY makes me angry!!

sxv
Member
4 years 3 months ago
To me NEVS is a dead end, they are in it for the money and they do not intend to make any new SAABs. At least that my guess. Youngman is not the perfect bider but I prefer them over NEVS. Which leaves M&M as the only buyer that is credible in my view. As I said before, EVs are not interesting since they tend to cost to much and they can´t replace a normal car. Having said that, the only way to go is to start producing the 9-3 again but this time with the eXWD solution, that’s the… Read more »
Jeroen
Member
4 years 3 months ago
“To me NEVS is a dead end, they are in it for the money and they do not intend to make any new SAABs. At least that my guess.” Of course. I indeed think the people behind NEVS woke up one day, felt like throwing away 1.5 billion SEK and launched a bid for Saab. Please think before you comment, will you? No bidder for Saab is in it for the money: any firm/consortium now bidding for Saab is taking quite an investment risk. Furthermore, a little bird told me that NEVS is actually very much intending to build new… Read more »
sxv
Member
4 years 3 months ago
What a bird has told you is for you to specify if you comment shall be of any interest. And according to the newspapers NEVS was not interested in SAAB parts and to me that means they are not serious. To me EVs are a dead end, and I did think before I made that comment, no matter what fauna you talked to. So to me NEVS is still a dead end, wanting the nohow etc from SAAB but I doubt very much that there will be any new SAAB built, at least in Sweden. And if you have a… Read more »
Mark
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I have to agree with you to some extent. NEVS as the sole owner of Saab would be a dead loss. However if it had just a partial stake in the brand, I think it could eventually be quite good for Saab. The important thing is that Saab has to make conventionally fueled cars for at least a decade, whilst a range of EVs and Hybrids are developed and gradually become part of the model line up.

sxv
Member
4 years 3 months ago

That´s my point exactly.

Nate 9-3
Member
4 years 3 months ago
I am also warming up to that. Electric cars are a good slice of the pie, but they should not be the entire pie in 2012 when no modern country has infrastructure in place. An anology that I will use is from the video game world. The manufacturer SEGA always came out first with the next level of hardware. They did this at 8-bit, 16-bit, 32-bit and 64-bit. The machines were always expensive at first so not a lot of loyalty was built up. Then Nintendo or later Sony would come up with a machine (sometimes superior, sometimes inferior) and… Read more »
RS
Member
4 years 3 months ago

“A few weeks ago the receivers came up with an idea: they untied the big Saab package and made seven smaller ones”

DEAR GOD! No wonder M&M went quiet. This also sounds like a perfect opportunity for those who want to cherry pick Saab into pieces and part ways with the existing customers (Vo…I mean NEVS?).
Just think of the damage this process has done to the new start -if we’ll ever see one. This is unbelievable. Only in Sweden…

kochje
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I completely agree with you.
I am chocked that the receivers do change the rules of the games at the last moment and offer 7 packages.
If on top of that no one knows who has made a bit on what it is no wonder that Youngman tries to make a bit again, even last minute, for all of these 7 packages and that while they are interested in buying it ALL.
I do not see what is wrong with that approach.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 3 months ago

It’s amateur hour in that court—-these people are clueless about how corportaions work, how business works. Isn’t that ironic?

kochje
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Very bad thought; if they were paid under : “no cure no pay” the deal was already closed?

tianalfred
Member
4 years 3 months ago

The file deal was postponed to Mid-June? pls do not delete my post all the time.

Sockmonkey
Member
4 years 3 months ago
So SweGov thought they were being clever by carving up Saab (after publicly– and repeatedly– saying that they preferred to sell it as a whole entity) , and managed to scare off the only credible buyer they had in Mahindra. Unbelievable. Saab has died a dozen deaths between GM’s negligence as an owner (and arrogance as an ex-owner), and SweGov’s constant meddling and destructive attitude towards this company– Maud, Guy, the current administrators have all done their level best to destroy this company. Now we are left with 2 very unqualified buyers to choose from, and if I understand this… Read more »
kochje
Member
4 years 3 months ago

+1

Mark O
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Bears repeat. Amazing incompetence.

Nate 9-3
Member
4 years 3 months ago

That about sums it up pretty well (from what we know publicly, anyways).

Mark
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I hope this gets sorted. The receivers greed could cost the creditors even more now? I truly hope Mahindra buys all of Saab or at least a majority share of it. If NEVS buys only the bits it wants of Saab and becomes the sole owner, I unfortunately think it will spell a lingering death for the brand. However combined with a car manufacturer like Mahindra, I think NEVS would be good, if it bought a minority stake and I think there would be benefits all round for Mahindra, Saab and NEVS.

Sensonic
Member
4 years 3 months ago
I can fully understand that receivers accepted Youngman to revise their bid: 1. They want the highest possible price from all SAAB related companies which were involved in bankcrupy (including SAAB parts). 2. Youngman had already placed their bid so I think that’s why the receivers agreed YM could revise their bid. Shouldn’t they place a bid at all in the first hand, I presume the receivers would’ve not wanted another company to step in the bidding process. Let’s hope that we’ll hear good news in the near future! “Everything’s fair in love and war”, that’s what they say. And… Read more »
baas900i
Member
4 years 3 months ago

appears a total trainwreck to me…. which is a shame…. how long did it take Kia and Mini to regain trust etc?

TonymacUK
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Trainwreck is putting it mildly. Say what you like about Youngman, but the administrators have acted in a totally unprofessional manner by splitting the Company into 7 packages at such a late stage in the proceedings. Mahindra is still the best solution.

dezzer
Member
4 years 3 months ago

totally agree….this is turning into a right fiasco……taken far to long and to those out there that say,” be patient”, ”dont worry”, ”lets wait and see and dont be hasty”………..this is’nt going to be good

kochje
Member
4 years 3 months ago

+1: this is not the way which is appreciated in business.
This way of working will get back straight in their face.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 3 months ago

The Receivers have failed. I knew they were in the process of failing a couple months ago—-their actions are utterly defenseless. They don’t seem to understand business. It’s unbelievable.

dezzer
Member
4 years 3 months ago

you and i have said this all along….since Jan i believe…….we’ve been CONNED ?

Steve
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I bought a 9-5 a year ago for my son and he absolutely loves it. I have had two Saabs and I am about to buy an ’09 9-3 Aero. While I hope Saan survives, regardless I will not regret my purchases because there is no car more fun to drive. Let’s hope they get it a deal worked out.

xelav
Member
4 years 3 months ago

This sucks! Boys stop bitchslapping each other, this is not the place to play schoolteacher . On topic: isn’t there a supervisor who controls the actions of the receivers, every person with any business experience knows that this works against them.(splitting in pieces) What now? Wait again aaargh

Marque
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Fantastic unveiling write-up Till!

As for your consequences drawn, though, I tend to differ. To me it tells that once again the legal forces dealing with Saab completely ruined a promising situation for Saab. I start to feel Saab must be accursed.

There have been several bidding sessions already and just after the final round, Receivers bowl over the laws of the game, head over heels? Just because they’re getting greedy? If someone, then it’s us who already learned it the hard way — thanks to GM — what a foul conduct this is…! Thus resulting in blasting Mahindra..!

sandborg
Guest
4 years 3 months ago

A parade of idiots, liars, and fools.
(If you don’t understand, please don’t ask; you either really already know or you just don’t get it.)

Marque
Member
4 years 3 months ago

TO THE RECEIVERS:
What about Saab Parts? What about not chopping up Saab?
What about us? Stop playing games and Save Our Saabs finally, damnit!!!

leriksso
Member
4 years 3 months ago
A the administrators have acted in a totally unprofessional manner by splitting the Company into 7 packages and what I know changing the conditions during the process. From the start the bid was for the whole company if I’m correct, but during the bids has the conditions change. Do the biddes know what they bid on as the administrators do not seem to know what they selling ? This isn’t M&M, YM or Nevs fault just the administrators to blame now. I had a wish for M&M but could accept YM and didn’t like the NEVS idea. It not feels… Read more »
aus715
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Why on Earth would they create 7 packets? This implies that they will NOT sell the entire thing, but in BITS!!! This flies in the face of everything we have been led to believe in the last year. AARGHHHH!!!
This is verging on gross mismanagement and the receivers have made a HUGE blunder with this one. If SAAB ever actually gets sold it will not be because rational thought and common-sense had anything to do with it.

Carlo A
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Thanks for the insight ……..In this “Backside of Tactics”, I would not like to take it in the backside …… fingers crossed … Griffin Up

PS: the receivers must have some unconditional offer letters with the money pledged … or not?

Daniel B
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Thanks for the post Till,

Do we really know this to be fact (the 7 packages) or is it pure speculation?
If it is fact then the administrators hav behaved in a very unprofessional manner.

It´s one thing to play that game with small companies involved, but with M&M..?

Hoping hoping hoping for Mahindra. Please come back.

Red J
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I can’t remember if there were 5, 7 or 10 packages, but there were different news about it on the press.

RS
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Do you guys think http://www.national-ev.se from Stockholm will produce a lot of traditional/BioPower turbo and turbo diesel cars?

bpsorrel
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I see they’re referring to Saab already…. deal done? 🙁

David-SAAB
Member
4 years 3 months ago

???

hans h
Member
4 years 3 months ago

On their website it sais:
National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB
SAAB Automobile, Trollhättan and Sweden stands for innovativeness and technology excellence. At SAAB Automobile, the engagement for future transportation solutions is pervasive.

jond
Member
4 years 3 months ago
There may be all sorts of possibilities that we haven’t considered, because we don’t know all the facts. For example, NEVS may not want to produce any other than test vehicles for years. Whereas YM or M&M may be able to employ the production line very quickly. And so on. The Receivers may be trying to put together a deal where each party essentially gets what it wants, thus maximizing the price for the whole. As for YM not having the money, my guess (and that is all it is) is that ChiGov acting through the NDRC has decided that… Read more »
FinnFemFel
Member
4 years 3 months ago
I have somewhat followed the discussions here from a distance, but feel that I have to make a few remarks in general… Bankruptcy is a process were an individual or a company no longer can pay its debts. It’s not a reconstruction or a situation were you “talk nicely” to the creditors to be able to continue operation. In a bankruptcy everything grinds to a halt and the court-appointed lawyers take over. The main reasons for the bankruptcy is a) it is not legal to continue run a company that obviously are just digging itself deeper into a hole of… Read more »
Marque
Member
4 years 3 months ago
Thanks for setting forth views from a different perspective. However I have a few remarks. While it is prohibited to directly intervene in a legal process by the government, no one said it is executed that way. But no, looking at the government or any political side, in any country of the world from a very suspicious perspective, is never ever childish let alone a pointless behaviour, or else you may be living in wonderland. The SweGov itself has a proven track record of handling the Saab case in a highly controversial way, with some really worrisome details on and… Read more »
Allan B
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Interesting observations FinnFemFel.

TonymacUK
Member
4 years 3 months ago

From jond`s post “The Receivers may be trying to put together a deal where each party essentially gets what it wants, thus maximizing the price for the whole.”
I think this is such a convoluted process that it will never happen

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 3 months ago

This could have been done, and done well, in three months—-with a new owner for the WHOLE Saab, creditors repaid in some way (no one will ever be happy about the amount, but it’s a bankruptcy) and the new company focusing on their new business plan. This should have been done in mid-April at the latest. What a farce.

TonymacUK
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Check out TTela`s website – to whet your appetite this is the last paragraph – ” Mahindra, I have confidence in and Youngman has an arrangement around a restart based on the existing Saab technology. It feels a little less certain what we could contribute in terms of electric vehicle consortium, if it comes that they want to produce cars with electric power alone.”

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Is it any wonder that a well financed, professional corporation like Mahindra would walk away from this nonsense? Holy cow, train wreck is putting it mildly. It’s like a comic strip in the Sunday paper—-moronic.

BMW Rider
Member
4 years 3 months ago

And maybe Volvo will finally get the scraps they bid on 🙁

xelav
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I read that a former Scania man , now audi, should integrate MAN and scania into the VAG group, bad for Saab that they can’t fit in Saab as well in their portfolio . They have enough money, and could be another nail in GM s coffin. Make a 95 on the passat platform , with the looks of the current 95. Just daydreaming .

Dannii
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Am I missing something: I was under the impression from the word go, the initial package was the whole gamut, no cherry picking of various bits and pieces as that would have diluted the value to the preferred creditors. Did the receivers now realized they can get more money for the preferred creditors by untangling the bundle in the hope of raising more cash? Is this not anathema to the original package?

Mark
Member
4 years 3 months ago

My view is that the administrators and Swedish government have not properly considered the big picture here, maybe it is due to EU rules on state interference but it strikes me as very short sighted to break up the company and ultimately one I think Sweden as a country will come to regret.

I do not know why but it seems there is more motivation to break SAAB up than to save it.

Very, very sad.

Mark
Member
4 years 3 months ago

Unfortunately creating the best return for creditors and creating a viable future for Saab, might not be mutually attainable targets? Like most people here, I’d like to see a good future for Saab as the first priority, but the receivers most likely will have the opposite view.

alwaysSaab
Member
4 years 3 months ago

I mentioned this many times before that if the Administrators keep on dragging its feet and shifting goal posts, nobody will be interested to buy Saab as a whole and the end result will be that the entity will be sold in piecemeal to the scrapyard. The best example is the Indian buyer where everyone is saying that that is the only hope, and now what happened!?

I found this whole saga a joke.

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