James Cain does it again

Today we were again faced with some statements from James Cain regarding GM and their stance towards the parties that are interested in Saab (from E24.se):

Our contact with Brightwell consisted only of several letters they sent with requests to start a discussion. We answered that we are not interested. It has never been any negotiations or discussions, he said.

TT: Why did you not agree to meet them?

– We stand by our policy not to sell technology licenses to a new owner for Saab.

TT: Not in any way?

– No.

TT: Typically in business, everything has a price tag.

– Not in this case, says James Cain.

TT: Can you describe why GM does not want to give Saab a chance to survive?

– They have had several chances to survive. The business has been in terrible shape for a long time. That’s why GM, when we had our own problems, decided to close down Saab. It was not GM’s fault that Saab decided to stop paying their suppliers and their employees.

To make it short: I do not believe that. As I stated before he is a spokesman and his job is to tell the press what he is told. But there are always some things that are handled in certain levels of the management that don’t give reports to the press department about what they are doing. It is as simple as that. So you can’t even blame Mr. Cain for not knowing about everything, he is dependent on the info he gets. But what I really don’t like is the tone he uses from time to time. Maybe it is because GM did not like Brightwell openly stating that they were in talks. Maybe it is because Zamier once said “of course we are not negotiating with their spokesman”. But there are still better, more professional ways of stating something than the way he did. If GM wants to keep things behind closed doors I can repect that but if you want to deny do it in a proper way.

Read moreJames Cain does it again

Saab Parts Sales for Canada is back

Great news for Canadian Saab owners and dealers. Effective today, IFS and SCNA will restart parts shipments to Canada. This will be handled the same way as the recently announced restart of the US Parts program and we should see parts start to flow nicely again very soon. I would say that as dealers have just now received the information, give them a little time to get everything set up. Great news is hard to come by and this is a step in the right direction.

Update***

In response to a question brought up on this thread, I emailed Tim Colbeck yesterday and got this response last night:

Jason,  Just yesterday, a bulletin went out announcing restart of parts sales in Canada.  We are about to restart shipping of parts from Sweden, first on backorders.  The new parts company hopefully will be formed soon to ensure perpetual source of parts.  So the parts news is getting better.  Tim

 I hope that answers the question clearly enough. A lot of work has gone into restoring the parts chain and a lot more work is ongoing. I can assure you all that Tim is working just as hard now as he always has been and things will get better on the parts front very shortly.

Youngman CEO Pang Qingnian on SVT.se

Mr. Qingnian says: “The goal is to buy the complete Saab and to continue to make the cars in Sweden. We want to do it using the present factory and the equipment inside. With that equipment one can reach the demands the market has on a car with the Saab brand. To many parties were invited by Victor Muller, Hawtai and Pang Da, he says he likes Victor Muller as a person, but if he had managed Saab wisely Saab would never had gone bankrupt. The task was to big for Victor Muller”

Pang says he is ready to put 2 Billion SEK on the table and buy Saab. If that is a bid the lawyers will accept we will see in a few days I hope.
According to Swedish media the cut off date for bids was monday evening. So technically there must be a winner out there somewhere…..

Statement from Brightwell to SU

Recently we got in contact with Zamier Ahmed who lead the team that was dealing with the acquisition of Saab. Here is the statement we got from him just a few minutes ago:

It is with great regret that we must inform you that we have withdrawn from the race for Saab. GM’s intransigence to cooperate and forge a relationship to revive Saab and additionally create revenue for GM was “not in the interests of its shareholders”. We remain bemused, shocked and above all disappointed that we could not join the Saab family.
We hope that Saab finds a home where its new owner will sustain the company’s heritage as we planned to.

Thanks for your efforts to Zamier and the rest of the Brightwell team.

While I personally find it pretty sad that they had to withdraw their application without even placing their final bid I guess that it lies in the nature of the process that we have to say goodbye to some parties sooner or later and so I’d still like to draw your attention to my recent post.

till72 on Brightwell pulling out

As Jörgen already posted earlier, Zamier Ahmed of Brightwell told di.se that they pulled out of the bidding process for Saab because they did not get as far as they wanted in the negotiations. Here’s an intresting bit:

It is the attempt to reach an agreement on the critical technology licenses, which GM owns the rights to, and production of 9-4X, which did not lead to any concrete results, according Zamier Ahmed.

When it comes to technology licenses, said GM will not say no, according Zamier Ahmed, but gave “unsatisfactory answer.”

What answer would you have wanted from GM?
“It is very simple. We would like to have the answer that they want to cooperate.”

Zamier Ahmed has previously declared that he has had discussions with GM, and that the signals are positive. According to him, he has been in contact with members of GM’s top management, which he also met in Detroit.

It was hoped to present a favorable response from GM on Thursday, along with the bid for Saab.

As you can surely imagine, there is no news from me without some additional words. So here we go.

First I don’t see a reason to believe that Brightwell did not talk to GM. Sure, our friend James Cain did state that there were no negotiations with any party about Saab. But this is the official company talk he has to obey. There are so many things going on behind closed doors he is not aware of as it simply is considered secret so he won’t get to know it until there is something to state in public.

Second I can imagine how frustrated Zamier is after they put a lot of effort in this and they did not reach their goal. Still, he stated that they did not give a satisfactory answer. Ne did not say that GM did say “no” generally. Of course GM know that there is a certain timeframe for Brightwell. They needed a postitive answer now but it seemed like they got none at all. Which brings me to my

third point. From all the dots we have collected and connected up to now it may well be that GM has found another party they’d rather see in this. If we tend to believe that Brightwell was really in talks with GM (which I do) this may explain why they changed their mind on the last meters. We got some indications that there was one party jouning the process quite recently. I’ll leave it to that as saying more would be a bit too bold in the current state of things.

So stay as sane as possible and don’t start senseless rude attacks towards GM. They won’t help but they may still hurt things. This is not over yet. Not at all.

Turkish Brightwell pulls out – “GM wants to kill Saab”

Zamier Ahmed says this to www.di.se tonight.
Reason to this is the attitude if GM
Everything was under control and we where excepting final feedback from GM. They changed their position in the very last minute. I am sorry to say that I have never seen such behavior from a company of that size ever”
Said by Zamier Ahmed and he is really disappointed.
He claims that they have put a plan on the table for Saabs future, GM has not only showed their unwillingness to cooperate but also the conclusion made by Ahmed that GM wants to kill Saab.
Brightwell says that everyone has been very cooperative in their work process lawyers, everyone…
More tomorrow on this….

Bill Jacobsons´s Saabs at home in Swedish territory


Saab 99 1970

As written here on SU some week ago Bil Jacobson and Tom Donney “split” the heritage Saab cars from Saab USA. Now the car bought by Bill has made it to Wilmington Delaware. A region with really deep Swedish connection by the way it was here the first Swedish settlers came 1638-1655 trading with the natives and later on built a church but that is another story. read more here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Sweden” title=”New Sweden”

According to Hemmings Blog the largest collector car marketplace on the web who refers to SU in an article, Bill might show some of the cars at the Simeone Automotive Museum in Philadelphia. More on that when we know more.

Read moreBill Jacobsons´s Saabs at home in Swedish territory

SOCGB on Top Gear Tonight

Those of you who are fans of Top Gear should tune into BBC2 (if you can) this Sunday at 8pm.
Top Gear will present a nice part of their show to the history of Saab.
The Saab Owners Club of Great Britain were invited to help put the show together by supplying cars, images and information.
Mike, Chairman of the SOC, said “We are proud to have been part of it and I think that we have done a good job for the Saab community”
Please visit www.saabclub.co.uk for more chat about the making of the show.

Swade has some tips for non GB viewers at http://www.swadeology.com/

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