The Status of The General Motors Renaissance Center

Posted on 08. Oct, 2008 by in 2000-2009, Detroit, Michigan

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Photo Credits: Saab History (Jan 2008)

As you may or may not know, the General Motors Renaissance Center is the headquarters for Saab Automobile USA and not North America as Saab Automobile Canada is located Oshawa, Ontario Canada and Saab Automobile Mexico is Mexico City, Mexico.

In the last few days, there have been a few blogs, one being autoblog and another that I will refrain from indicating, apparently misinforming people about the status of the General Motors Ren Center.

With this misinformation, I have decided to take the initiative and flat out ask the folks at GM what the status is of the Renaissance Center in Detroit (Saab Automobile USA’s Headquarters).

From rapid response I received, I am glad to hear that Saab Automobile USA’s office won’t be relocating because they’ve moved a lot over the years in their leased facilities from New York City (1956), to New Haven (1961) & Orange, Connecticut (1971) to Norcross, Georgia (1992) and finally to the Renaissance Center in Detroit, Michigan (2004).

I leave you with the official statement about the Renn Cenn from Tom Wilkinson Director, GM News Relations

GM’s Worldwide Real Estate operations has been exploring options for monetizing the Ren Cen, a fancy word for borrowing money against the value of the building. This is a common practice for companies that don’t want to tie up large amounts of capital in real estate. The company can invest the capital in the business, and pay back the investors with income from the property.

The previous financing package on the building, initiated in 2003, expired in May 2008. At that time, GM said it would pursue a new financing opportunity when the credit and real estate markets allowed.

Because one type of financing alternative is structured as a lease-buyback, the media reported that GM was considering selling the Ren Cen.

GM has no intention of moving its corporate headquarters from its present location in Detroit. We will continue to explore financing options for the property, although the current credit and real estate markets make the timing for such a deal uncertain.

Tom Wilkinson
Director, GM News Relations

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