General Motors Co announced that Saab will close down, the sale to Dutch car maker Spyker Cars NV could not have been completed quick enough to save the manufacturer.
“We regret that we were not able to complete this transaction with Spyker Cars,” GM Europe President Nick Reilly said in a statement. “We will work closely with the Saab organization to wind down the business in an orderly and responsible manner.”
Koenigsegg Group AB were potential buyers of Saab but talks failed last month and Spyker stepped in.
In a statement last week GM said”certain issues arose that both parties believe could not be resolved.”
GM did not disclose what problems arose.
Spyker has had their own financial problems, only 21 cars were built in the first half of the year and they lost 8.7 million euros in the first six months of 2009. Sales fell by 1.6 million euros to 4.1 billion euros compared to the previous year.
Earlier in the week Saab announced it had sold all the rights to the current 9-5 as well as some of the technologies from the current 9-3 to Beijing Automotive Industry Holdings Co. for an undisclosed amount. According to a Swedish business newspaper, BAIC are thought to have paid $197 million (USD) for the assets.
A Saab spokeswoman thought that the money from the Chinese would give Saab’s new owners a good foundation to build upon. They were confident a new owner would be found.
A European analyst who would like to remain anonymous because of his business dealings with GM and Saab said”This could lead to a slow and painful shutdown.”
The only bidder for Saab which celebrated its 60th birthday on December 16 was Spyker.
BAIC plan to start production of its Saab based cars as soon as 2011.
GM Europe’s boss Reilly said the Saab closure isn’t bankruptcy or a forced liquidation, “Consequently, we expect Saab to satisfy debts including supplier payments and to wind down production and the distribution channel in an orderly manner while looking after our customers,” Reilly said.
Saab will continue to honor warranties as well as providing service and spare parts to current Saab owners around the world.