About the EIB loan process….

The next all-important step for Saab and the Koenigsegg Group (well, if you don’t count convincing the government you’re for real) is the application process for the $600m they’re after in loans from the European Investment Bank.
Whilst many consider this a fait accompli as long as the government’s on board with a guarantee, the EIB would like you to think otherwise.
This article on Saab and the EIB comes from E24. JV was kid enough to provide a translation for us, reproduced below:
Saab must squeeze through a needle’s eye
“We don’t have lower requirements than a normal bank. Historically, it’s rather been the other way around”, says Eva Srejber, vice president of the EIB, which will evaluate Saab’s application for a loan of over 4 billions [SEK].
Yesterday, the investors behind Koenigsegg Group sent in information to the EIB about what the new Saab could look like after an acquisition.
Among other things, the information contains an income statement, balance sheet, new financial plan, predictions of future incomes and a stress test.
This is the same information that was presented to, among others, the [Swedish] governments representative Jöran Hägglund during yesterday’s meeting with the Koenigsegg consortium. Since for the EIB to grant the loan, it’s required that the [Swedish] government will step in as a guarantor.
But it’s not an extra nice bank that will to handle the loan application to finance research and development projects aiming to develop more environmentally friendly cars.
– We want our money back and we don’t have lower requirements than a normal bank. Historically, it’s rather been the other way around. That a company gets a loan granted by us has rather been seen as a quality seal by other banks, says Eva Srejber, vice president of the EIB, who will be present during the assesment of the loan application.
And now the more or less secret investors behind Koenigsegg Group will be scrutinized.
– Of course we’ll go through everything very carefully. It’s the company itself that must have a long term survivability. We in the EIB management, and the bank’s board of directors, must think it’s probable that the company can repay the loan, says Eva Srejber.
The EIB has it’s own transport economists that will review the application from an economical and financial perspective.
– Among other things, we weigh the strength of the balance sheet, predictions of future incomes, and possible securities and guarantees. We have political goals, but within these political goals we work just like any other bank.
But if the [Swedish] government / the Swedish National Debt Office decides to guarantee the loan, then it’s no doubt about you granting it?
– The management of the EIB will always make it’s own assessment. But the bank is owned by the 27 EU countries and representatives for the countries’ governments is in the board of directors. It’s unlikely that the Swedish National Debt Office and the EIB will reach different conclusions. Both have an interest in the loan being repaid.
How strict is the assessment regarding which projects you approve?
It can be a number of things that makes a car more environmentally friendly. It can be the tires, the weight or the shape of the car or the entire drive train, the engine or the type of fuel. We can also finance development projects to research cars that are safer, to reduce the number of accidents.
But certainly, all research is about developing safer and more environmentally friendly cars. It sounds like you could consider supporting all research at a automotive company?
– You are right that most automotive companies are doing research towards less environmental impact. And this is because there are future requirements that the cars must fulfill. It’s our engineers that will evaluate which projects that we can approve, says Eva Srejber.
But even if the EIB will grant the loan application, the financial problems won’t be solved for Koenigsegg Group.
The company can only finance half of the project costs with loan from the EIB.
The sound like pushovers to me. If the government’s in, they’re in. It’s a no-lose situation for them once the guarantee is in place.
My thanks to Jakob for the translation!

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