EU Australia Online - News & information from the capital of Europe direct to Australian businesses

Saab: Last, Last Ditch

  • January 9th, 2010
  • Posted by EUEditor

saab-turningnews.jpegLast- minute bidders emerged to try to save the Saab car company on the final date formally declared for offers (7.1.10), by the parent company General Motors.

Sales of the Swedish luxury cars, first put on the road in  1949, have fallen off sharply in the last three years- last year down  by a quarter from the 2008 figure of just under 94 000.

General Motors invested in the company twenty years ago and became the sole owner in 2000.

saab-logo.jpegEfforts to market GM vehicles with the prestigious Saab badge could not arrest declines in sales, in the face of fierce competition from the  larger German makes in the luxury-and-performance field.


However, this week three groups indicated interest in a possible purchase:

The small Dutch car-maker   Spyker , following-up an earlier, unsuccessful bid; the head of  Formula One racing Bernie Ecclestone, with a private investment company from Luxembourg; and a private investor group in Sweden.

GM executives are expected to meet the Swedish government soon, but have indicated they consider a sale to be unlikely, as they move to wind up the operation  in Sweden.

Some 3400 people were employed by Saab last year.


Joseph Szczesny, “GM chairman expects … no Saab sale”, The Oakland Press, Detroit, 7.1.10. (8.1.10).

Harro ten Wolde and Nicholas Vinocur, “Fresh hope for Saab as new bidders join race”. Reuters, London, 8.1.10. (8.1.10).

Pictures; Saab logo