Tag Archives: retail

Alix Partners Member Part Of Original Reconstruction Team

Posted on 08. Jan, 2010 by .

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Stephen J. Talyor of Alex Partners has been indicated by Sweden’s Dagen’s Industry as being part of this team to “wind down Saab”, but on the other hand strangely enough, he was also part of the reconstruction team last year to “Save Saab”.

This is really getting quite strange indeed.

Here’s a bio about Stephen Taylor

taylorStephen brings over twenty years of experience as a specialist in international business recovery and insolvency, serving clients across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. His industry expertise includes textiles, manufacturing, retail, and real estate. He also has experience in various Asian markets.

Prior to joining AlixPartners, Stephen was the Eurofirm Business Recovery Leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers. In that role, he assisted clients by analyzing their market positions and cost structures, determining appropriate benchmarks and milestones, negotiating debt and capital structures, and identifying both quick wins and longer-term strategies. He is well known for challenging orthodoxy in the search for better solutions, and strongly believes that the traditional approaches found in many European countries are sub-optimal for ailing companies and economies. He led some of the first corporate cases under the European Insolvency Regulation to arbitrage the differences in bankruptcy law between the countries of Europe. He has also advised international political and financial institutions on the development of best practices in the field of insolvency and business recovery, including The World Bank Group, The European Commission, the Commonwealth Development Corporation, and several governments.

A frequent speaker throughout the world, Stephen is the author of the chapter on international insolvency in the Handbook of Credit Management, and a contributing editor to both Kluwers International Corporate Rescue and the Global Restructuring Yearbook (Euromoney). He is also a consulting and contributing editor for the latest edition of the highly successful European Restructuring and Insolvency Guide (White & Page) published in 2005.

Stephen is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, a Fellow of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals (R3), and is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, INSOL Europe, and INSOL International. He holds a bachelor’s degree in music with honors from the Royal Holloway College, London University.

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Another Saab Exclusive Designed Dealership Facility Sold

Posted on 13. Aug, 2009 by .

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Photo Credit: Saab Of Baltimore / 2006

Sports Car Service, who I visited back in 2007 has sold family owned and operated Hunt Valley Saab also known as Saab of Baltimore Saab designed dealership this week according to the Co Star Group. While the building will serve a new use, the dealer continues, but operates under a new name as they have merged with a multi-brand dealership nearby.

It’s a shame that another one of these Saab designed exclusive dealership facilities is now gone due to promised product which dictated the construction of the new facility, never arriving.

Delaware-based Sports Car Service Inc. sold the former Hunt Valley Saab dealership at 11212 York Road in Hunt Valley, MD, to Jackson Properties Inc. for $2.86 million, or $198 per square foot.

The buyer plans to occupy the property next month, doing business as Finch Services.

The two-acre property includes a 14,470-square-foot retail building that was built in 1997. The property has 118 feet of frontage on York Road and 120 parking spaces.

Phil Hoge and J. Gregory Ellis from Patterson Woods Commercial Properties represented the seller, while Ketchum Secor from CB Richard Ellis represented the buyer in this transaction.

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United States Based Ripplewood Holdings Investment Group 3rd Buyer For Saab Automobile

Posted on 21. May, 2009 by .

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TTELA now reports that United States Based investor is not Renco, but Ripplewood Holdings Investment Group, which would secure the third place as prospective buyer for Saab Automobile.

However, just last week, Sweden’s the locall reported that Ripplewood Holdings were looking into buying GM Europe’s Opel brand much like Magna was. Why is everyone who is rumored to want Saab, also want Opel? I know there are a lot of synergies, but sheesh!

Here’s a brief about Ripplewood Holdings, LLC from wikipedia.

Ripplewood is an American private equity firm based in New York, New York[1] that focuses on leveraged buyouts, late stage venture, growth capital, management buyouts, leveraged recapitalizations and other illiquid investments.

Ripplewood was founded by its current CEO, Tim Collins. The company’s main interests range from telecommunications to banking to entertainment. The firm manages more than $10 billion in capital.

Here’s more details from Business Week.

Company Overview

Ripplewood Holdings, L.L.C. is a private equity firm specializing in late ventures, growth capital, acquisitions, buyouts, management buy-ins, recapitalizations, turnarounds, and consolidations investments. The firm typically invests in consumer products, education, financial services, medical services, electronic equipment and components, food manufacturing, chemicals, technology, industrial equipment, publishing, advertising, auto, and general retail companies. It primarily invests in companies based in Japan, Europe, and United States. The firm seeks to invest a minimum of $50 million per transaction in its portfolio companies. For buyout transactions, the firm primarily invests in companies with sales between $50 million and $500 million. Ripplewood Holdings, L.L.C. was founded in 1995 by Mr. Timothy C. Collins and is based in New York, New York with an additional office in Tokyo, Japan.

Ripplewood Holdings, LLC.

1 Rockefeller Plaza
32nd Floor
New York, NY 10020

United States

Founded in 1995

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The Saab Automobile AB Reconstruction Team

Posted on 15. Apr, 2009 by .

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The Saab Automobile AB Reconstruction team was appointed by judge Cecilia Tiselle at the Vänersborgs court on February 20th, and include four people directly responsible for the future of the company.

It should be known that the details of this reconstruction process does not actually involve the Saab Automobile AB Management board nor the Swedish Government, it’s just the reconstruction team themselves.

I am hopeful that this team will pull it off, they’ve already met the April 6th milestone according to court documents, and so it seems there is a good chance that they will meet May 20th’s as well unless they feel they need an extension.

Here are some brief summaries of the team for our reference.

Jan Ã…ke Jonsson – Saab Automobile CEO.

Jan Ã…ke Jonsson, Saab Automobile AB President since 2005 continues to lead the company through reconstruction.

Experience:
2005 – Managing Director of Saab Automobile
2002 – 2005 Sales & Marketing, Europe and Asia-Pacific, Saab Automobile
2002 – 2002 Executive Director and Vehicle Line Executive, Commercial vehicles, GM Europe
1997 – 2002 Vehicle Line Executive, Trucks/Vans/Mini-segment, GM Europe
1995 – 1997 Director, Business Unit 9000/9-5, Saab Automobile
1993 – 1995 Vice President, Quality and Customer Satisfaction, Saab Automobile […]

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The Letter To Saab Automobile USA Dealers Concerning Exclusion In the GM Confidence Plan

Posted on 06. Apr, 2009 by .

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First, I would like to take a moment to thank you and your teams on your March sales performance. Saab retail sales were up almost 80% versus February and 2008 inventory was reduced by over 27%. A key component of that sales reversal were strong, straightforward incentives that were easy to explain to your customers. This direction was strongly encouraged by your Saab Dealer Council. I am pleased to report that those same strong, simple incentives have been carried over into April and should result in another strong sales performance.

This leads me to some questions I have received today regarding Saab not being included in the GM Confidence Plan that was rolled out today. I want to be clear that it was our decision to not include Saab in this plan. As I stated earlier, we have a retail formula that is improving our sales. If we had included Saab in the GM April retail offering we would have to remix the incentive support creating more complexity for your customers and lower cash/APR offers. I think we would all agree that this is not our best interest.

In addition, as was stated on today’s IDL, Saab provides a warranty and prepaid maintenance package for our customers that is different from the other GM brands. As you will recall, in mid-2008, Saab AUtomobile USA eliminated the GM 100,000 mile/5 year powertrain limited warranty for the 2009 model year, instead choosing the original 4 year/50,000 mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty coupled with roadside assistance, courtesy transportation and no-charge scheduled maintenance. Given the differences in the warranty coverage, we would have had to further alter the April retail support.

I hope that you will agree that staying on a play was successful in March was the best option for us in April. I would ask each of you to ensure that your teams stay focused on selling more Saabs in April than we did in March.

Regards,

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Saab History Interviews Former Saab USA President Joel Manby

Posted on 31. Dec, 2008 by .

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Photo Credit: Manby (L-to-R Ralph Millet, Joel Manby, Bob Sinclair)

I have recently had the privilege of interviewing Joel Manby, the former Saab USA President from June of 1996 until April of 2000.

Below is his updated and candid account of our interview, it is a great read, so take the time and enjoy!

Thank you Joel for your time and contribution, we all appreciate it!

Saab History: How Did you end up joining Saab Cars USA in June of 1996?

Manby: I worked at Saturn as a Regional Vice President and was picked to lead Saab Cars USA in order to improve the dealership distribution network by making it more focused and more profitable.

I used to co own some retail dealerships so I knew how important the car buying experience was in the customer’s final decision on what brand to buy, especially since it was the 2nd most expensive purchase a family would make after a home. I also knew that our competitors like BMW, Audi and Volvo had a much more profitable and focused dealer network. I was determined to reinvigorate the dealership network to turn around the car buying experience to one that was enthusiastic for not only the customer, but the dealership’s sales team as well. We were asking dealers to invest in exclusive dealerships and sales people so in many cases we actually removed some dealers who were not committed or dueled with poor brands in order to get other dealers to invest heavily. Our basic goal was to go from selling 25,000 Saabs through 360 poorly focused stores (average = 70/year per store) to 40,000 sold Saabs through 240 stores (a more focused and profitable average of 170/year per store). Dealers need to know they can be profitable before they will invest.

Saab History: How did this strategy work?

Manby: The units sold per dealership increased to over 150/store as did the national sales figures which topped 40,000 during my time. We had more exclusive stores than any time in recent history and had the 2nd highest sales year in Saab history to that point….so I would say it worked well. We also gained huge share in Southern California where we were almost non existent.

Saab History: Consistent advertising was never something that Saab had, what did you do to turn this around?
[…]

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