Saab’s revival hopes have suffered two more blows, with General Motors knocking back another rescue package and Saab’s restructuring administrator admitting that he is losing patience in the ordeal.
GM, which owns the rights to the technology used in a number of Saab vehicles, says it cannot support the latest takeover bid by Chinese manufacturer Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile and an unnamed Chinese bank.
“We have reviewed Saab’s proposed changes regarding the sale of the company,” GM said in a statement. “Nothing in the proposal changes GM’s position. We are unable to support the transaction.”
Early last month, GM rejected a proposal from Youngman and fellow Chinese manufacturer Pang Da Automobile, who offered to purchase 100 per cent of Saab for 100 million euros ($131 million). GM objected to the deal because it believed the takeover could hurt its position in emerging markets like China.
Saab restructuring administrator Guy Lofalk told Swedish business newspaper Dagens Industri he was considering ending efforts to resurrect the embattled manufacturer. “I immediately have to decide if it really is possible to continue this restructuring,” Lofalk said.
Some analysts have suggested the latest roadblocks could lead to the death of Saab as early as this week. Any deal to sell Saab must first be approved by GM, then agreed upon by the European Investment Bank and the Chinese and Swedish governments.
Saab ceased production of its 9-3, 9-4X and 9-5 vehicles in April because it didn’t have enough money to pay its employees or suppliers.