Swedish car manufacturer SAAB has had a rough spring and early summer but its main investors are sticking with plans.
It looks grim but main investors are sticking with Saab
A spokesperson for Pang Da, one of Saab Automobile's Chinese partners, says in an interview with Bloomberg News that they stick to an agreement made with Saab’s owner Swedish Automobile (previously known as Spyker Cars). Saab’s problems with discontinued production, trouble with suppliers and lately also default payments and delayed salary payments changes nothing.
“There’s no change to our previous plan,” Wang Yin, board secretary of Pang Da, said in a phone interview. “Saab is having temporary financial difficulties and the problem isn’t fundamental.” Pang Da, which is based in the city of Tangshan in northern China, has paid 45 million euros ($64 million) for Saab cars that are to be delivered in the fall and plans to invest 109 million euros for a 24% stake in Zeewolde, Netherlands-based Swedish Automobile, which was previously known as Spyker Cars NV.
Saab and Swedish Automobile are in talks with various parties to raise cash short term, the company said yesterday in a statement. The options include the sale and lease-back of the factory in Trollhättan, Sweden. The 2nd quarter infusion of capital from EIB of close to 30 millien EURO was held back due to SAAB's issues with its suppliers, according to observers. Also, the investment by Russian oligarch Antonov, which was approved by the Swedish National Debt Office, has yet to be approved by the EIB. Some Chinese observers are not optimistic about the Pang Da - SAAB deal, according to the Bloomberg article: “The Saab deal isn’t seen as a promising one by industry observers given the potential risks,” said Fang Ju, an analyst with China Minzu Securities Co. in Beijing. “There’s little chance for the deal to be approved by Chinese government given the crowded status of local auto manufacturing.” Pang Da, which raised 6.3 billion yuan ($973 million) in April in an initial public offering in Shanghai, sells 20 car brands including vehicles from Toyota Motor Corp. and Volkswagen AG (VOW)’s Audi division.