Update on Situation from Just Auto

As usual, Simon Warburton of Just Auto has the best wrap up of events at Saab this week. There’s a lot of posturing going on behind the scenes on both sides, but all parties understand just how urgent the situation is. This could go any way at this point, and all we can do is wait. Hopefully this gives a little clarity on the situation. I advise everyone not to over analyze, all parties are trying to reach the best deal they can all agree upon.

Saab says the time limit on its potential Chinese investors’ memorandum of understanding (MoU) is concentrating minds as the automaker looks to convince former owners General Motors of its latest business plan.

GM poured cold water on a proposal by Chinese manufacturer Youngman and distributor Pang Da to assume 100% control of Saab, leading to intense negotiations this week between the parties to try and resolve the crisis.

It is believed Saab CEO Victor Muller is leading the talks from his home on the Mediterranean island of Majorca but the Swedish automaker has only until Tuesday, 15 November before the MoU runs out with almost no further options left.

“Time is a factor here of course,” a Saab spokeswoman in Sweden told just-auto. “The MoU as it is formally written now, is valid until 15 November and for many reasons it is in everybody’s interest to come to an agreement as soon as possible.

“It would be fair to say everyone feels the urgency of coming to an agreement”

The Swedish government told just-auto this morning it had raised the possibility of significant job losses should Saab go bankrupt with General Motors, with the US automaker continuing to talk to its former subsidiary.

“GM is definitely a part of the dialogue – I can’t characterise it more precisely than that,” said the Saab spokeswoman. “It is not as if everything is being discussed without GM.

“We are understanding GM’s position – we are looking for a structure that can be agreed upon. GM has some specific points they would like clarified.”

The Swedish government is anxiously eyeing huge job losses of up to 12,000 posts should Saab fail, including those in the supply chain.

The administration has stumped up three months’ wages for Saab employees as the automaker secured bankruptcy protection but that pot has now run its course.

It has also been in contact with China’s National Development and Reform Commission that has the final say on Chinese company investment.

Quijote
Member

watch the douchebags at the truth about cars (forever inferior to jalopnik) take this article, spin it in a negative way, and run with it.

napoleon complex in full effect over at TTAC.

tmjr
Member

I wish I could remember how to spell ” douchebag” because I’d use more often to describe some of the players involved in this mess.

Bravada from GMI
Member

Please don’t die Saab 🙁

No 9
Member

Obviously, GM has to find a good reason to collaborate in the survival of a competitor, albeit a customer also.. Wouldn’t the distribution force of Pang Da interest them for some of their products?

TukanSaab
Member

Guys it’s not about how many vehicles GM can sell. IT IS about how the Chinese do not honour any IP related issues or commitments. Once the IP is turned over to them they take it and exploit it in breach of all IP law. I for one, if I had developed IP and invested to do so, would never license or sell it to the Chinese without deciding first to never use the IP again. Once they have it, it will be exploited everywhere with impunity.

SaabKen
Member

Like these:

http://www.autoblog.com/2005/05/06/chevy-doesnt-like-chery/

http://theage.drive.com.au/photogallery/chinese-copycat-cars-20100422-teui.html

I think GM (and other western automakers) should turn the table around and *copy* Chinese-designed and made cars 😀

900 classic cab
Guest

The thing I find curious is the sudden hurry of the swedish government to protect 12000 jobs…but only now (and possibly to late), after VM was willing to step aside in order to save SAAB. Curious.

Mark
Member

Agree. Now the Swedish government is worried about job losses! It didn’t seem to be too worried two years ago when GM sold Saab. It must be close to an election?

No 9
Member

They are just trying to «spin» something out of the situation before it is terminated.

Remdu67
Member
GM: I do not understand what is really logical in GM’s behaviour, I mean now that they decided to get rid of Saab at the end of 2009. They sell 2 millions cars in China. They share technology with SAIC. They sold the Saab 9-3 technology to BAIC in sept 2009. And little Saab with baby Youngman and big smal Pang Da could be a threat for GM’s market in China?! I do NOT believe a word of that. So the question to me is : What do GM really want? They need to share/sell/lease their own technology to make… Read more »
zippy
Member

Remdu67, unfortunately GM has every right to protect its IP. GM isnt killing Saab, Saab not building cars is killing Saab.

Remdu67
Member
I think that most of you are very (very) naive about the analysis of the ownership of Saab. Yes legally speaking, Saab belongs to Swan. To my point of view, General Motors has never sold Saab. It is indeed very clear now that the 70 millions € that paied Spyker (Swan) was in fact just a right to get into Saab’s equity but certainly not the right to buy Saab’s production. GM non only poored Saab with keeping even the IP issued by Saab ingeeners research, they sold Saab 400 M$ but without any proper IP. What did Ford with… Read more »
saaburban
Member
If GM is worried abt IP rights + competition maybe it should consider taking up an ownership in SAAB so it can both control and benefit. SAIC & BAIC poses the biggest threat right now as they are already using Saab technology in china and one of them is a GM partner. What I don’t understand is why GM stopped all Chinese & Russian companies to buy & invest in Saab from the very beginning. Maybe GM expansion in the east is so fundamental to the survival om GM that they been toying w Saab all along. So if GM… Read more »
3cyl
Member

GM probably wishes they had gone through with the shutdown of SAAB (in 2010) rather than the sale.

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