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BREAKING: SAAB-ED By The Bell - GM Agrees to Sell the Swedish Brand to Spyker Cars NV

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BREAKING: SAAB-ED By The Bell - GM Agrees to Sell the Swedish Brand to Spyker Cars NV

Tuesday, January 26, 2010 | 0 Comments » Categories | GM, Reports, Saab, Spyker |

It's been a long road for SAAB, and even though we don't know what the future has in store for the quirky brand, for the time being, the Swedish automaker has been saved as General Motors and Spyker Cars NV today confirmed that they have reached a binding agreement on the sale.

"Today's announcement is great news for Saab employees, dealers and suppliers, great news for millions of Saab customers and fans worldwide, and great news for GM," said John Smith, GM vice president for corporate planning and alliances.

"General Motors, Spyker Cars, and the Swedish government worked very hard and creatively for a deal that would secure a sustainable future for this unique and iconic brand, and we're all happy for the positive outcome," Smith said.

Very few details were released on the agreement, but in a joint statement, the two parties said that Spyker intends to form a new company called Saab Spyker Automobiles and that the Swedish government is currently reviewing the transaction and the related request for guarantees of a Saab Automobile loan that has been requested from the European Investment Bank.

GM said that the SAAB sale is expected to be finalized in mid-February, adding that the previously announced wind down activities at SAAB will be immediately suspended, pending the close of the transaction.

Citing "people familiar with the matter", the Wall Street Journal reported today that the tiny Dutch sports carmaker agreed to buy SAAB from General Motors for around $74 million in cash while the American firm will also receive preferred shares in the newly formed company under the name Saab Spyker Automobiles.

General Motors did not respond to Wall Street Journal's report, but it did note in the press release that "the terms and conditions specific to the sale will be disclosed in due time".

Nick Reilly, president of GM Europe, said: "Throughout the negotiations, GM has always had the hope to find a solution for Saab that would avoid a wind down of the brand. We've worked with many parties over the past year, including governments and investors, and I'm very pleased that we could come to such a good conclusion, one that preserves jobs in Sweden and elsewhere. GM will continue to support Saab and Spyker on their way forward."

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Breaking: GM reaches agreement to sell Saab to Spyker

01/26/2010, 1:20 PMBY ANDREW GANZ

After months of intense negotiations with various parties, General Motors has finally reached a binding agreement to sell Saab to Dutch supercar manufacturer Spyker. The deal, which would save nearly 10,000 direct and related jobs in Sweden and abroad, awaits only regulatory issues in Europe and the United States, as well as confirmation of a loan from the European Investment Bank.

Early reports suggest that the deal is worth $74 million in cash and $326 million in preferred stocks from the new Saab Spyker Automobiles that Spyker intends to form. GM says it expects to complete the sale in mid-February.

“Today’s announcement is great news for Saab employees, dealers and suppliers, great news for millions of Saab customers and fans worldwide, and great news for GM,” said John Smith, GM vice president for corporate planning and alliances, said in a statement. “General Motors, Spyker Cars, and the Swedish government worked very hard and creatively for a deal that would secure a sustainable future for this unique and iconic brand, and we’re all happy for the positive outcome.”

In an ever-consolidating auto industry, Spyker’s decision to purchase Saab is considered a major gamble by many.

“Marginal players will continue to be marginalized,” Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne told reporters at a separate event in Stockholm.

Marchionne has long been a proponent of creating fewer brands controlled by a handful of dominant players, a business plan he has continued to execute with moves like Fiat’s acquisition of Chrysler last year.

Spyker itself was a late entrant into the bidding for Saab; the automaker’s CEO’s interest in the brand only became public after Koenigsegg’s failed bid late last year. GM and Spyker were initially unable to reach an agreement, prompting the Detroit automaker to begin winding down Saab’s operations. Yet Spyker CEO Victor Muller was persistent in his efforts and finally reached terms of agreement that worked for GM – and terms that defied doubt cast by new GM CEO Ed Whitacre Jr.

“Throughout the negotiations, GM has always had the hope to find a solution for Saab that would avoid a wind down of the brand,” said Nick Reilly, president, GM Europe, in a release. “We’ve worked with many parties over the past year, including governments and investors, and I’m very pleased that we could come to such a good conclusion, one that preserves jobs in Sweden and elsewhere. GM will continue to support Saab and Spyker on their way forward.”

It’s expected that more news on Spyker’s business plan for Saab will emerge in the coming weeks prior to the sale’s closure in mid-February.

link:

http://www.leftlanenews.com/gm-to-sell-saab-to-spyker.html

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This is great news. Glad to see Saab saved from the grim reaper.

I bet those Saab owners who showed support for their band are very happy to hear this as well. :)

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Good to hear. Hopefully Spyker will bring back more quirkyness to the brand.

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Good to see GM play some hardball there. GM gets close to $0.5B from SAAB. ($74M Cash + $326M preferred shares + $100 cash). Wonder how much is SAAB worth overall?

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A final song for SAAB:

Boy George

Sold

SAAB SOLD

Last night General Motors said to me

They are sick of making history

There's got to be a better way

But we've got all these brands to kill

And they ain't just gonna go away

Another GM factory - about to be shut down

Another GM factory - about to be shut down

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

You're gonna like this one, you're gonna like this one

The people at SAAB do

See if Mr. Wagoner was a man

He'd tip the hat, he'd pass the can

But he don't talk for GM you see

I saw him on ABC

His eyes looked like a SAAB factory

About to be shut down

His eyes looked like a SAAB factory

In Trollhattan with the lights out - about to be shut down

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Last night General Motors said to me

They are sick of making history

There's got to be a better way

For SAAB to be

Last night General Motors said to me

When SAAB goes up what will they be

Bought by a minority car company

They at least will protect them

They've got a factory that's not about to be shut down

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

Sold - did you hear it? - SAAB sold

SAAB - There's gonna be a better way for them than this

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This is great news. I think there are a lot of us who did not want to see the SAAB brand disappear. Lets hope the new owners have a great vision on how and where to take this company. Of course we want uniqueness, but the way of the future must be lighter and smaller.

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Interestingly reminds me of DAF, when they were owned by Volvo. Swedish owned a Dutch brand, now it's the reverse.

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SAAB fans get a miracle.

Pontiac fans get shit on.

I'm happy for Saab, though. The Saab-Spyker synergy is going to be a colorful, interesting one. And it looks GM will still be involved somehow (largely due to developing the 9-4x and 9-5; interests to protect and so on), so hopefully Spyker and GM can give Saab the support it deserves.

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SAAB fans get a miracle.

Pontiac fans get shit on.

I'm happy for Saab, though. The Saab-Spyker synergy is going to be a colorful, interesting one. And it looks GM will still be involved somehow (largely due to developing the 9-4x and 9-5; interests to protect and so on), so hopefully Spyker and GM can give Saab the support it deserves.

Spyker can help with the business vision, the entrepeneurial dream. GM will be a long term partner not only because of the 9-5 and 9-4X, but also because I am 99% sure the all-new 9-3 to be launched in 2012 (according to the info on the business plan) will be beased on Delta 2. 2012 is just two years away and for a new car to lauch in such a short period of time the design must be finalized and major systems and decided on. That means a platform has been chosen and the cheapest way to go is for GM to license Delta 2 to SAAB.

Re Pontiac, you must remember a crucial difference between the two brands: there was no "Pontiac Automobile Inc", but there is a SAAB AUtomobile AB, an entity with assets and liabilities clearly defined and that can be carved out fromt he parent company fairly easy. Pontiac could not be sold as a car cmpany, only as a brand/badge.

Edited by ZL-1
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