Spyker and Youngman complete transaction

Many of us would have loved to read this post in June 2011 and not in June 2013. But somehow this piece of news remains interesting, as Spyker-Youngman plans to also build Phoenix-based cars in the near future.

The new question is, who will build the best Phoenix-based cars?
—-

ZEEWOLDE, THE NETHERLANDS | JUNE 28, 2013

Spyker N.V. (“Spyker”) announces that, based on the subscription
agreement including accessory agreements (the “Transaction”) that
were signed 6 December 2012 and to the full satisfaction of both parties, it
has completed the transaction with the Chinese car manufacturer Zhejiang
Youngman Passenger Car Group Co, Ltd (“Youngman”) today.

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Youngman Considering Their Own Legal Action

Our favorite writer over at Just Auto, Simon Warburton, has posted a very interesting story today about Youngman looking at the possibility of filing their own suit against GM. What a crazy 24hrs this has been. Just yesterday Victor Muller through Spyker brought a 3 billion dollar lawsuit against GM for unlawful actions and now today there is this possible lawsuit to come forward from Youngman. It’s starting to look like a deck of cards falling in on General Motors and one that I think is rightfully deserved.

From the Just Auto article, Lars Holmqvist the former head of CLEPA says:

“Youngman is also thinking about suing GM,” Holmqvist told just-auto from Sweden. “I know that. They have not made up their minds and, of course, they would be encouraged by Victor Muller’s lawsuit.

“I have information. I know from people…they are looking into the possibility. It is obvious because they spent SEK550m…securing the rights to the new platform.”

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Chinese Whispers

Sometimes you just wish people would speak more clearly. When John Nylén, the lawyer and spokesperson for Youngman in Sweden, talked to ttela about Youngman’s new bid on friday, he said that they had “ongoing contact” with the receivers. But just before that he had told SVT-Västnytt that they did not have contact recently and that the receivers did not react on the then latest bid. So what are we up to believe here? It feels a bit like that statement towards SVT was to put some pressure on the receivers. Not too successful I’d say. The expression toothless tiger springs to mind.

What really bugs me about Youngman is the way they act ever since. They were talking a lot, making promises on what they were going to do. But except some money in the pre-bankrupcy times they did not deliver too much. And exactly this seems to be their biggest burdon in this whole process. Much against the normal way Chinese carry out business, they were pretty loud and everywhere.

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Youngman Is Still Trying

Just came across an article posted on Di.se and TTELA stating that Youngman has today submitted another offer for all of Saab. What does all this mean? Your guess is as good as mine. It states that they have shown evidence that they have the money but is that the money to purchase only or is this showing they have the money to invest into a future for Saab as well? Who knows?
Di.se

Chinese Youngman has added a new bid for SaabChinese Youngman consider themselves not at all be looking out the game in terms of the sale of Saab’s bankruptcy estate. The company presented on Friday a new bid.

“Our revised bid this morning includes all parts of Saab’sbankruptcy estates, including spare parts company. And our offeralso means that the state and the auctions will be full compensation for the debt which is in bankruptcy, that is 2.2 billion. Youngman has also provided evidence the money available, “said attorney JohnNylén, a spokesman for Youngman in Sweden.

“Youngman has now accelerated the ambition tobuy Saab and start production as soon as possible. We have hadongoing contact with the administrators, but we hope to get into an intensive contract discussions now.”

Youngman’s lawyer also adds this in comments:

Nylén also tells TT that Youngman has received “acknowledgmentletter” from the Chinese “super ministry” NDRC.

This letter also means that Youngman is the only chinese company allowed to purchase Saab’s assets and that no other chinese citizen is allowed in any constellation to acquire Saab’s assets.

It would appear that the possible road blocks that have been present in the past with the NDRC are not there now. As with any stories coming out right now, I would strongly caution reading too much into anything right now as a lot of what is said to and in the media changes. It would be great to have a set deadline where after said point all offers that are to be looked at have to be in by and that this nonsense of the never ending back and forth is gone.

Goodbye Youngman (again)

While we are waiting for a confirmation on a sale of Saab it is surely worth mentioning that Johan Nylèn, lawyer and spokesperson for Youngman in Sweden, told SVT-Västnytt that they did not have contact with the receivers for a while. Very interesting also that according to him the receivers did not even react on the recent, new, bid. I can imagine Youngman damaged their own credibility too much or they simply came too late.

So the plot thickens that the buyer will be NEVS – but there is still room for a surprising comeback of another party. We’ll see.

Move Your Mind

We have seen a lot of ups and downs in last years attempts to find a suiting investor for Saab. We gained hope many time only to be brought down again for example by GM. So it is no big surprise that we got even more critical towards parties that are in this process, not matter if they are rumored or a fact. In some stages it even feels like people demand those parties to disclose their bids to us so we can judge them. But really, why should they?

Since the 19th of december the whole process has moved behind closed doors which I see as a very good thing. It was maybe easier for us before as we had more things to report on but for the goal itself, is will surely be helpful. Those parties have to convince the receivers, not us. Still, we were able to get in contact with several parties who are there and they of course understand the value of the community. But right now it is business time.

So what is left for us right now? I already used the term of the dots we are thrown and that we have to connect to our best knowledge. But as always, there is not only one way to do that. Sometimes you just draw a sideline to see what happens. And sometimes you sep back a bit to get a better view of the big picture. In the end this is nothing else that the out of the box thinking we all like so much about our favourite car company and that we demand from a future Saab.

Looking at the discussions in comments I tend to feel that this different way of thinking got lost among some of us somehow. Quite a few tend to look at interested parties with a certain degree of bias, thinking a lot of possible backsides of each party – once bitten, twice shy you might say. But while doing that you may miss the chance to see the opportunities. And there are many as I’d like to point out on a few examples.

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More on Youngman meeting the receivers

As we reported below Youngman’s delegation has met the receivers today for further negotiations based on their indicative bid. A short quote from the report at di.se shows that they seem to be one of the parties who are very eager to get a deal done:

“They’d rather not go home without getting the green light that they can buy,” says a source familiar with the process.

I know, di’s sources are infamous but let’s just go with them here.

Pang Qingnian told P4 West on Friday that the company has a plan and is hopeful to get the chance to buy Saab.

“We will do our best anyway. If Sweden gives us the opportunity to buy Saab, we will certainly do our best to revive Saab.”

But the administrators have multiple bids to consider. Next week, they meet with more stakeholders. Among other things, stated Indian Mahindra that they made an indicative bid.

Youngman’s indicative bid shall be around two billion crowns. One source describes the first offer is consciously laid low. Youngman has not counted in the profitable parts company Saab Parts, in which the state has assets of 2.2 billion crowns. A final bid will therefore be significantly higher.

From the last paragraph one could assume that the bid to buy Saab as a whole should at least be around 4.2 billion crowns plus additional funds to run the company and develop new models. In Youngman’s case those additional funds were said to be 12 billion Swedish crowns. I wonder how long that amount would have to last for the task of developing a complete model range is anything but cheap and additionally those first years until sales numbers reach a certain point will burn quite a bit of cash.

12 billion crowns translate to about $ 1.8 billion or 1.36 billion Euro. While being a huge sum when lying on a table it is burnt quickly when running a car company. So I bet the receivers want to hear how every bidder can handle those initial losses as noone wants to find Saab in a deja vu in two years again. Even more as with most likely three remaining bidders there is a choice.

The receivers are doing a good job so far. Things are quietly running. It can surely be frustrating for us who want news but it is good for the process itself. Zamir Ahmed also told us he was very satisfied with their work. After the Lofalk sitcom we experienced last year this is pretty encouraging.

Youngman want a quick decision. Whilst this is understandable I don’t think the receivers are willing to take any pressure from that. Everybody in there, the administration as well as the bidders are aware that time is crucial. I’d hope that this will lead to straight talks without playing games. And in the very end to the best possible outcome for Saab.

Youngman meeting the receivers

ttela.se reports that right now the receivers are meeting Youngman for further discussions on their bid. Reportedly both Pang Qingnian and Rachel Pang are part of the Chinese delegation, as well as representatives of a Chinese bank. It will most likely be about financial details as well as about their plans for Saab.

The starting point is the bid, the Chinese company previously put on Saab, the forms of and ability to find a way forward.

Youngman has already had considerable difficulties, given that GM said no, but have tried to find a solution that does not include the technology licenses as GM controls, which eliminates most of the models that Saab had.

While I’ve been quite critical towards Youngman in the past I still hope that they are able to present a sound plan to overcome all hurdles in their way. Every party that is in the process is good because it raises the chance that Saab is kept together and cars start rolling out of the Trollhättan factory again some time in the future.

But most of all it is good to see the process is moving forward and serious talks have started.

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