Tag Archives: President

Mike Colleran, President Of SCNA – Autoline Interview

Posted on 29. Mar, 2010 by .

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Mike Colleran, President & COO of Saab Cars North America was recently interviewed by Autoline Detroit this past Friday.

Click here for that 47 minute interview.

Below is the summary:

Mike Colleran, SAAB, Todd Lassa, Motor Trend, Jeff Bennett, The Wall Street Journal. Topic: Reinventing SAAB.

You may recognize the headline above as a famous ’60s song written by the Kinks. However, when GM exited from bankruptcy last year it almost turned that hallowed tune on its head. With brands being jettisoned left and right, “Stop Your SAABBING” — recorded by Big Ed & The Board — seemed like the song Detroit was ready to export to Trollhattan, Sweden, home of the iconic motor company SAAB. And as word of its impending doom grew you could practically hear the cries from the Swedish automaker’s loyal community for a white knight to save their favorite cars. But instead of resolution came the teeter- totering spectacle where one moment the the brand was saved by some international buyer, while the next the doors were being locked for good.

Yet in the end, Dutch businessman Victor Muller rode in to save the day on a white hand-built Spyker C8 Aileron Spyder and stopped all the potential sobbing with his purchase of SAAB. And now the resurrection begins. But how can a car company that sold less than 9,000 vehicles last year in America be reborn?

For those answers and details on the plan itself join John McElroy and his Autoline panel — Todd Lassa of Motor Trend and Jeff Bennett from the Wall Street Journal — as they talk SAAB with Mike Colleran the man in charge.

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Saab History Interviews Joel Manby About Undercover Boss

Posted on 24. Mar, 2010 by .

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Saab History has had the great chance once again to interview Joel Manby, Saab Cars USA’s former President (1996-2000). This interview is about about his recently mentioned experience on the CBS television series “Undercover Boss”.

A sincere thank you to Joel for his input about this series prior to the air date this Sunday night, March 28th at 9pm EST. I particularly like his last response pertaining to Saab Automobile.

Enjoy the interview below:

1) How did you initially get involved in CBS “Undercover Boss”?

The producers contacted us. They were looking for an entertainment company and theme parks provide a good visual background. Because we are independently owned, not associated with a media conglomerate, and have a variety of properties—-theme parks, aquariums, sightseeing operations— we were a good option for them.

2) What were some of the areas of the program that interested you most?

At first we were very skeptical. Anytime someone proactively approaches us and wants to produce a television show on our property, then healthy skepticism follows. But as we engaged in serious dialogue with them, we realized that they were really searching for companies who would embrace the concept and be willing to hold the mirror up to see what we could learn about ourselves. This wasn’t a scripted television program but rather an honest look at our employees and their roles within our organization. I know that when I visit our properties that I get special treatment, even though I don’t want it or ask for it. This was a unique opportunity to work the front lines in a way that I would never be able
to do currently. I know we have terrific employees—and I wanted to witness first-hand how dedicated and passionate our employees are as they interact with our guests to ‘create memories worth repeating’. I didn’t just want to observe, I wanted to participate and feel their passion. So, highlighting the good people of Herschend Family Entertainment was important to me.
[…]

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Saab History Welcomes Exclusive Motors As Sponsor

Posted on 17. Feb, 2010 by .

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Photo Credits: Exclusive Motors

Saab History welcomes Exclusive Motors in Los Angeles as a premium sponsor. The owner of the company, Jeremy Morrissey is a proud supporter of Saab History, and is no stranger to Saab’s history.

Morrissey started out as a Saab mechanic at a dealer no longer in business where he was a quick study. In a short amount of time, he transitioned into a sales rep working at what was at the time, the top selling Saab dealership in the United States, Ramsey Saab, as shown in the 1985 Saab Scania of America dealership development video (4:48). At this dealership, he became one of the top selling sales reps in the country, working there from approximately 1988 until 1995 under the leadership of the owner, Ray Van Duren. His experience was unique as Van Duren was quite an influential dealer at this time where he pushed for variations of Saab products that sold such as the Monte Carlo yellow convertible, platana grey convertible, power seats in the 9000 in 1989 while ensuring that the SPG would continue production in 1990 and 1991 model years. After speaking with Jeremy, he seems to have an emotional attachment to the experience with Ray.

Following this launch of his career for nearly a decade at Ramsey Saab, he continued to explore other Saab dealerships to apply his unique marketing skill in New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts. Spending a significant amount of time in the North East, he decided to move out to the good weather in sunny California, to become the general Manager of Saab of Santa Monica from 2001 until 2008. Here, he turned this dealer into the #2 volume dealer in the country and #1 in the Western region.

As the economy hit the automotive landscape hard in 2008, he decided to finally open Exclusive Motors, his own independent facility. He reflects on the time he has had working with Saab since the early eighties and says that “he has made some of the best friends he has ever had” and believes that “the close knit nature of the Saab dealerships allowed for good relationships amongst employees and customers to be there through thick and thin”

Taking on the ideas of how the dealership network can be influential, Morrissey contributed to a number of advertisement campaigns over the years.

In addition, he has contributed to product additions much like his former boss did, ensuring that the then new 9-5 came equipped with leather door panels opposed to the cloth it was introduced with. It was at the 1997 Jubilee in Sweden where he spoke with the then President of Saab Automobile AB, Bob Hendry, which ensured that this product change became a reality. Other product initiatives also included the design package in the ’02 9-3 SE convertible.

When he looks back at all of the great times he has had with Saab here in the United States, 1992 was his best year overall. That being said, it was a former colleague of his that put him in touch with Saab History and eventually took ownership of a vehicle that meant a great deal to him, that was the 1992 Saab 900 Turbo project. Spending a significant amount of time and resources to personally restore this vehicle, I was very happy to learn that it would be going to a good home in a place where it would be cared for. Since the sale, I have learned that it has been further restored utilizing original parts that he has been saving for 18 years such as a new windshield, leather seats, etc. Today, Morrissey proudly displays this vehicle in the showroom at Exclusive Motors.

Today, he continues his pursuit in carrying the Saab torch by restoring nearly 15 classic Saab models to their original appearance, with original parts he has been storing away for nearly 20 years. These vehicles include very low 1987 900 Turbo rose quartz, 1991 9000 Turbo 5-Door, 1991 Beryl Green SPG, 1992 900 Turbo 3-door, 1992 9000 CD Griffin Edition, 1993-1997 Aero & Anniversary Edition, 1993 900 CE, 1993 900 Emola Red convertible, 1994 900 Eucalyptus convertible and 1994 900 CE Convertible.

A historian in his own right from his experience and passion from working with Saab, Morrissey is thrilled to see Saab owned by an exclusive and unique brand.

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GENERAL MOTORS AND SPYKER CARS REACH AGREEMENT ON SAAB

Posted on 26. Jan, 2010 by .

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News Release
spykerheader

• GM and Spyker Cars announce a binding agreement over the transfer of ownership
of Saab
• Terms are agreed and the deal is expected to close in February
• Saab’s future as an independent company is secured
• Saab will exit the orderly wind-down process
• Spyker shareholders will restructure at closure of the deal
• Swedish Government issues guarantee in favour of EIB

ZEEWOLDE, The Netherlands (26 January, 2010) – General Motors Company and Spyker Cars N.V, today confirmed the details of a binding agreement over the transfer of ownership of Saab Automobile AB of Trollhättan, Sweden. The transaction is expected to close in February and Saab Automobile will exit the orderly wind down process in line with that timetable.

The transaction will be accomplished as follows:

• Spyker acquires from Saab Automobile Investering AB, a subsidiary of General Motors (“GM”), all the issued and outstanding ordinary shares in the capital of Saab Automobile A.B. (“Saab”) for a consideration of USD 74 million (“Purchase Price”).

• The Purchase Price will be paid in two instalments. The first instalment of USD 50 million will be paid on the date of completion of the transaction, expected to take place on or before February 15, 2010 (“the Closing”). The second instalment of USD 24 million will be paid on July 15, 2010.

• The Share Purchase Agreement is subject to the execution of a EUR 400 million loan agreement between Saab and the European Investment Bank (“EIB”), guaranteed by the
Swedish Government. Today, the Swedish government announced approval of this guarantee. The guarantee is subject to approval by the European Commission, which is expected shortly.

• Upon completion of the transaction GM will retain redeemable preference shares of USD 326 million. The preference shares represent less than 1% of the voting rights in the capital of Saab. The mandatory redemption date is 31 December 2016 and Saab has the right to request voluntary redemption at any time prior to this date. The preference shares carry a dividend entitlement of 6% starting from January 2012, increasing to 12% as from July 1, 2014. The dividend over 2012 will be added to the principal, but as from January 1, 2013 the dividend is payable in cash. Should Saab have insufficient distributable reserves to pay the cash dividend it will be added to principal increased with a penalty factor.

• In order to allow Saab to operate on a stand-alone basis outside GM, Saab and GM will enter into a number of ancillary agreements. As part of the transaction, Spyker intends to negotiate the acquisition of all the outstanding shares in Saab Great Britain Limited, the UK distribution, marketing and sales company for Saab from General Motors UK Limited.

• Spyker will issue a corporate guarantee not exceeding USD 10 million for Saab’s obligations to and for the benefit of the financing company GMAC.

• Spyker will as soon as practically possible convene a general meeting of shareholders to approve the transaction. Spyker obtained irrevocable voting undertakings to vote in favour of the transaction representing the voting majority of its current shareholders.

• It is the intention to change the name of Spyker Cars N.V. at that general meeting of shareholders to Saab Spyker Automobiles N.V.

• As back-up financing, Spyker entered into a EUR 150 million Equity Credit Line Facility with GEM Global Yield Fund Limited (“GEM”) for a term of 3 years. According to this facility, Spyker may issue shares to GEM at 90 per cent of the volume weighted average price of the shares over a period of 15 trading days following a draw down notice sent to GEM by Spyker. In relation to the GEM facility, Spyker has issued to GEM share warrants in respect of 1,570,000 ordinary shares at an exercise price of EUR 4 per ordinary share. The warrants have a 5 year
term.

The object of acquisition
• In spite of media reports that certain parts have already been sold off, the object is Saab as a complete entity and going concern with all IP rights, trademarks, facilities and other infrastructures. The sale of pre 2003 Saab 9-3 and current Saab 9-5 technology to BAIC in December 2009 did not result in any part of Saab’s business being divested or devalued. On the contrary, Saab has already started the production of the new generation Saab 9-5 in Trollhättan.

• Both Saab management and Saab GB management prepared an estimated balance sheet as at 31 December 2009 for the purpose of this transaction. These estimated balance sheets are
still subject to final account closing and audit procedures.

• Spyker Cars does not yet have a balance sheet as at 31 December 2009 ready for reporting purposes. As such, it would be premature to show a pro-forma combined balance sheet for
Spyker, Saab and Saab GB as at 31 December 2009.

• Therefore Spyker only disclose an indicative combined balance sheet of Saab and Saab GB as at Closing date based on the estimated balance sheets for both entities as at 31 December
2009, adjusted for the impact of the transaction items as at Closing date.

• It should be noted that the indicative closing balance sheet is based on the latest estimated balance sheets of both entities by Saab and Saab GB management which are subject to final closing and audit procedures and therefore subject to change, and does not reflect any potential fair value or purchase price allocation adjustments. The indicative closing balance sheet should therefore not be considered as the actual closing balance sheet, but only as an indication for the assets and liabilities to be acquired at closing date.

stats

Saab’s and Saab GB’s combined revenue amounted to some EUR 1.0 billion in 2009 (2008:
EUR 1.6 billion). Earnings before interest, taxes and depreciation amounted to EUR 0.4 billion
negative in 2009 (2008: EUR 0.3 billion negative). In 2009 Saab sold 39.903 cars and
produced 20.791 cars versus selling 94.751 cars in 2008 and producing 89.086 cars.

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RESTRUCTURING AND MANAGEMENT BUY-OUT

As from Closing of the Saab acquisition, the ownership structure of Spyker will change as follows:

• Tenaci Capital B.V. (“Tenaci”), a company wholly owned by Mr. V.R. Muller has made a successful bid on Mr. V. Antonov’s current shareholding in Spyker consisting of 4.6 million ordinary shares. As agreed in 2007, when Mr V. Antonov acquired his shares in Spyker, Mr. V. Antonov will cause the transfer of the priority share to Spyker if and when he would dispose of his shareholding. A resolution to cancel the priority share will be proposed at the upcoming EGM.

• Messrs. N. Stancikas, M. Bondars and Mr. V. Antonov will retire as members of Spyker’s Supervisory Board effective as per the date of Closing.

• Tenaci will grant to Spyker two loans. One for an amount of USD 25 million towards payment of part of the Purchase Price for Saab upon completion of the transaction. A second loan for an amount of EUR 57 million for repayment of all of Spyker’s current outstanding loans to banks and other financial institutions controlled directly, or indirectly by Mr. V. Antonov. This loan mirrors the existing terms (including the lender’s right to convert EUR 9.5 million into ordinary shares at a conversion price of EUR 4.00 per share).

• The sale will be subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of applicable regulatory, governmental and court approvals. Other terms and conditions specific to the sale are not being disclosed at this time. Victor R. Muller, Spyker’s CEO, stated: “We are very much looking forward to being part of the next chapter in Saab’s illustrious history. Saab is an iconic brand that we are honoured to shepherd. We are delighted to have secured the jobs and livelihoods of thousands of loyal Saab employees, suppliers and dealers and to have given reassurance to the 1.5 million Saab drivers and enthusiasts around the world. It was breathtaking to see so much support from the global Saab community over the last months which not only shows the strength of the brand but also helped us in our relentless determination to get the deal done.”

“Spyker Cars will provide Saab with the backing required to compete as a competitive global brand along with an entrepreneurial leadership team sensitive to the uniqueness, heritage and individuality of the Saab brand. I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Vladimir Antonov for his formidable support during the past two years. His contribution has allowed Spyker to get to the point that this
transaction was made possible. I also want to extend my gratitude to Messrs. Stancikas and Bondars as Members of the Supervisory Board. They have made very valuable contributions to our company
during their respective terms.”

“Finally I would like to thank the Swedish Government for its constant support for our efforts culminating in granting the Guarantee in favour of the European Investment Bank today for an EUR
400 Million loan to Saab which we hope to secure in the coming weeks.”

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Jan Åke Jonsson, CEO of Saab Automobile AB said: “It has been a challenging 15 months for Saab but our global organization has shown a fighting spirit that will serve us well going forward. The
agreement with Spyker Cars has secured Saab’s future and will enable us to maximize the brand’s potential through an exciting new product line-up with a distinctly Saab character.”

“Today’s news is great for Saab’s customers, dealers, suppliers and employees around the globe. The level of passion and support shown to Saab over recent months has been remarkable and I would like
to take this opportunity to thank all of those people who continued to believe that Saab deserved a future. Now we aim to get back to the execution of our business plan and with the continued support
of our employees and business partners I am confident we will succeed.”

Nick Reilly, President GM Europe, added: “As a responsible corporate citizen in Europe, and throughout the entire period, GM has always had the hope to find a positive solution for Saab that
would avoid a wind-down of the brand. We have worked very hard with many parties, including governments and investors, and I’m very pleased that we could come to such a positive conclusion
that preserves jobs in Sweden and elsewhere. GM will continue to support Saab and Spyker Cars on their way forward.”

-Ends-

Note for the media, not for publication
For further media information, please contact:

Saab Automobile Press Office
Tel: +46 (0)520 279797

Spyker Cars Europe, PFPR Communications:
Mike Stainton
T: +44 (0) 1622 77 66 87
M: +44 (0) 7739 891 040
E: mike.stainton@pfpr.com

Tom Housley
T: +44 (0) 1622 766510
M: +44 (0) 7746 646 356
E: thomas.housley@pfpr.com

Peter Rawlinson
T: +44 (0) 1622 691 361
M: +44 (0) 7971 472 715
E: peter.rawlinson@pfpr.com

Spyker Cars North America, PCG Campbell:
Shane Smith
T: +1 310 224 4965
M: +1 310 224 4965
E: ssmith@pcgcampbell.com

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Saab History Partners With Tretorn To Save Saab

Posted on 25. Jan, 2010 by .

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save_saab_tshirt

If you are a Saab owner, enthusiast or supporter of the “SAVE SAAB” campaign. Whether you participated in a gathering somewhere around the globe or simply want to show that you were a supporter of the campaign and Saab spirit wherever you live, I encourage you to buy one of these limited production “Save Saab” t-shirts provided by the Swedish company, Tretorn.

Please Note: Right now, the t-shirt is only able to be sold in the United States. I’ve worked with Tretorn to ensure international availability, but their system is unable to provide this. If you are in another country other than the U.S., I would advise getting the t-shirts shipped to a colleague in the states, then pay them through paypal, the shipping cost to you.

tretorn_logo
Press Release

TRETORN SUPPORTS A FELLOW SWEDE WITH LAUNCH OF “SAVE SAAB” CAMPAIGN

“Save Saab” T-Shirt Available at The Tretorn Shop, NYC and www.tretorn.com

BOSTON, Mass. (January 14, 2010)

Tretorn®, the modern outdoor brand with deep Swedish roots, is going to bat for the survival of much-loved Swedish car manufacturer, Saab, with the launch of its “Save Saab” campaign. Tretorn is showcasing its support and enabling consumers to show theirs with a special “Save Saab” T-shirt available starting January 15th. A final decision to sell or dissolve the carmaker could come later this month or in early February, according to GM Europe President Nick Reilly.

“Tretorn and Saab share a strong bond, with our Swedish heritage and loyal following,” said Antonio Bertone, chief marketing officer for Tretorn. “We want to show our support and invite fellow Saab fans to join us. We hope that if enough people stand up for a brand they believe in, it might encourage the powers that be to save Saab.” Regardless of the outcome, purchasing this t-shirt, signifies your commitment and dedication to supporting Saab.

Tretorn has teamed up with Saab devotee Ryan Emge of saabhistory.com and is donating a portion of the sales from the T-shirts to Ryan’s continuing efforts to keep Saab alive. Tretorn’s “Save Saab” campaign will also be the focus of its Facebook page(www.facebook.com/tretorn) and Twitter profile (@tretornsavesaab) to keep consumers informed and up to date.

The Tretorn “Save Saab” T-shirt is available at the Tretorn Shop, NYC and on www.tretorn.com in sizes S-XL, while supplies last, for $24. The Tretorn Shop in SoHo is located at 150 Spring Street, between W. Broadway and Wooster.

Media Contact:Megan Mulcahy, CGPR, 781-639-4924 xt 112, megan@cgprpublicrelations.com

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Tretorn is headquartered in Helsingborg, Sweden and founded in 1891. It is one of the leading brands for outdoor products in Scandinavia, as well as the 3rd largest brand in Europe for tennis balls. Tretorn is a wholly owned subsidiary of PUMA AG. For more information please visit www.tretorn.com.

Saab History and the site www.saabhistory.com, are owned and operated independently from Saab Automobile, GM and any other affiliates

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Saab History Urges You To Contact Your State Senator & US House Representatives To Save Saab This Week

Posted on 03. Jan, 2010 by .

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As Saab Automobile’s fate is to be determined in 4 days (January 7th), it could be ultimately up to you in the United States that ensure that Saab is saved and here in the United States, the dealership network is preserved and all of the related business continue.

While some of us are able to make to Detroit to show our Saab spirit, others are gathering in Europe, you in the U.S. need to take action if you cannot make it to Detroit by contaacting your State Senator and U.S. House of Representative to tell them to Save Saab.

Saab History’s colleague Saabs United are also stating that you can make also help make a difference, so check out their site too for the additional talking points and letter.

I sincerely urge you to contact these people by e-mail today, and by phone on Monday. Each Senators and Representative’s office needs so many phone calls that it is overwhelming that they do something on Monday. Please take this initiative.

Here is the contact info and talking points.

Call Your US State Senators and US House Representatives TODAY!!!!!

Every US citizen who is concerned about Saab’s future needs to ACT TODAY! Time is running out. A decision by GM not to sell Saab is unethical, injurious, arbitrary and simply bad business. This needs to be made more public! We need to alert the media and our elected politicians about this while there is still time to prevent GM from injuring all of us. Please follow the links below to find the US Senator and House Representative for your State. For your Representative you will need your zip code +4. I have included the US Postal link for your convenience.

Contact Info for Officials from the President to State Legislators:
Phone, Email, and Snail Mail for Your Congressional Representative:
Phone, Email, and Snail Mail for Your Senators:
Send an Email to the White House:
http://zip4.usps.com/zip4/welcome.jsp

Saab Talking Points

* Important note! : Two deals exist (Spyker and Merbanco). Both match GM’s initial offer for sale as well as address all the additional concerns raised by GM!

* What’s At Stake?: As a result of GM’s decision to shut down Saab, about 5,000 jobs will be lost at the dealership level in the US. It is not a very large number, but each of those losses can be avoided.

* Additional Information: The US taxpayer currently owns 61% of GM via $30+ billion of bailout funds and outstanding loans of an additional $4.5 billion.

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New Deadline For Saab Bid Is Pushed To January 7th

Posted on 30. Dec, 2009 by .

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TTELA reports that a new deadline for the Saab bid is January 7th. It’s also worth noting that Saab Automobile’s factory is set to restart on January 11th, so let’s use this as our final deadline if the 7th is delayed by a few days.

New deadline for Saab bid

Stockholm, General Motors, Saab Spykers deadline for bids has been pushed back to January 7, states Spykers CEO Victor Muller of Reuters.
Mullen will now be more potential buyers than Spyker.

– This is something we have not heard of it yet, “said Anette Hellgren, union president of the Union at Saab’s Trollhattan factory, if the new deadline.

– I understand that the 31st was something that we thrust in the GM’s side in connection with the settlement announcement. Contrary, I have taken it so that it will hold on until it is finished.

Anette Hellgren says GM for a discussion with Spyker and it not strange that it set a deadline.

But timing is not important, as Koenigsegg, referring to when they pulled out?

– That’s it. There is a business plan that we so much want to follow.

– And the longer it drags on, the tougher it becomes, “says Anette Hellgren.

She does not believe there is a big gap between the end of December and January 7 from that aspect.
[…]

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Saab’s Union, IF Metall, Plans To Contact U.S. Government

Posted on 30. Dec, 2009 by .

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Swedish Radio & TTELA indicate that Saab Automobile’s union, IF Metall plans to contact the White House.

Someone at Saab should contact the U.S. government for reviving negotiations on Saab’s future.

Stefan Löfven, IF Metall Chairman

– We have decided to do all that is necessary. We want to know that when this is over, no matter how it ends, so we have done our very best, “said Stefan Löfven, president of IF Metall.

IF Metal, The Union of Sweden and engineers are trying to contact the U.S. government to influence negotiations on Saab’s future. The U.S. government since the financial crisis is the majority shareholder in GM.
[…]

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