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Saab in partnership talks with serious players, Spyker CEO Muller says

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Saab in partnership talks with serious players, Spyker CEO Muller says

ROISSY-EN-FRANCE, France (Reuters) -- Saab is in talks with possible partners about exchanging technologies as it tries to return to profit by 2012, the head of new owners Spyker Cars, Victor Muller, said on Wednesday.

A large number of serious players had approached the company, Muller said on a trip to meet French Saab dealers, adding that he wanted to ensure Saab had the technologies it needed to be profitable and self-supporting.

"Nobody sees us as a threat so everybody wants to talk with us," Muller said. "And there are good chances that we will be supplying our technology to third parties, we're not going to be just on the demand side of things," he added.

The impact of the financial and economic crisis on the auto industry has put joint research, parts and platform programs in focus as carmakers cut costs and accelerate car development.

Loss-making Saab was acquired from General Motors Co. for $400 million last month by money-losing Dutch luxury car maker Spyker and put on an ambitious turnaround path.

Saab said earlier this month it would have to sell more than 100,000 cars a year to break even after sales plunged to below 40,000 last year. It hopes a complete renewal of its model range will help it exceed that level in 2012, reaching 125,000.

Saab will focus on three to four models, including the 9-3 and the new 9-5.

Muller added that the combined group was studying a dual stock market listing in London and Stockholm and that moving Spyker's headquarters to Sweden from the Netherlands was not ruled out.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100325/ANE/303249960/1265#ixzz0jCdi5gJd

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