Tag Archives: spokesman

Swedish Government Talked With Fiat About Saab

Posted on 05. May, 2009 by .

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Photo Credit: Regeringen

Reuters reports that the Swedish Government has had contact with Fiat on Saab Automobile.

I would be very interested in hearing more about the details on this dialogue with FIAT at this time, and if it affects the existing Saab Automobile reconstruction process.

I am also curious if any, Maud Olofsson’s remarks were as well. I still haven’t heard about what her dialogue with Rob Bloom at the U.S. Treasury was, when she made her visit to Washington, D.C. late March. I hope to hear back about that dialogue too! from those folks as well.

Here’s the piece from Reuters below.

Swedish govt says had contact with Fiat on Saab
Mon May 4, 2009 11:59am EDT

STOCKHOLM, May 4 (Reuters) – Sweden’s government confirmed on Monday it has had contact with Italy’s Fiat (FIA.MI) regarding General Motors’ (GM.N) struggling Swedish automaker Saab.

“We have had contact with Fiat,” said Hakan Lind, spokesman at the Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications. “The meeting was about Saab.”

Lind said the government had been in contact with Fiat a couple of weeks ago, but said nothing concrete had been decided. He declined to provide any further details.

The carmaker won more time to restructure in early April when a Swedish court extended the period in which the company is protected from creditors. GM has said it plans to cut ties to Saab by the end of the year.

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Saab History Learns That Koenigsegg & Power Circle Are Best Choices As Prospective Saab Automobile Owners

Posted on 30. Apr, 2009 by .

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I have recently received an e-mail from an anonymous insider. This person has indicated that apparently Saab Automobile believes that the Swedish company Koenigsegg & the Swedish investment group (Power Circle) are to be the best possible buyers for their company at this time.

Swedish company, Koenigsegg is the third automobile manufacturer in Sweden and has a long racing history and is touted as the best company to take ownership of Saab Automobile.

Power Circle is a Swedish investment group coupled with Sweden’s Innovatum in Trollhattan and the country’s largest energy provider, Vattenfall. The Norwegian government has also expressed interest in funding the new hybrid development and electric car projects at Saab Automobile as well.

It looks like right now, unless things change, the Swedish investment group, Koenigsegg & the Swedish Government will be the formation of financially supporting Saab Automobile once emerged from reconstruction on May 20th. Having a fully-Swedish owned & invested company will satisfy the requirements of the Swedish Government’s loan guarantees ensuring sustainability and locality keeping all production, talent, engineering, etc. at Saab Automobile in Sweden.

I should mention that the Power Circle group, and all of the parties involved have not responded to Saab History’s inquiries, and they are the only ones that have not, coincidence?

I leave you with a quote from Saab Automobile’s Eric Geers not too long ago.

“I cannot disclose who they are, but I can confirm that there is a group of investors in Sweden which has shown interest,” Saab spokesman Eric Geers told Automotive News.

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Swedish Investor Group Interested In Saab Automobile

Posted on 13. Mar, 2009 by .

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Left Lane News reports that an unnamed group of Swedish Investors are apparently showing significant interest in buying Saab Automobile AB.

I would be more interested in this group opposed to the Chinese because of the track record that has followed that region in just about every single category which ultimately, would be detrimental to the Saab Automobile company if they did buy it.

I am looking forward to more details on this Swedish investor group at this time and wonder if this has anything to do with the group of stakeholders mentioned earlier (Innovatum, Pininfarina, Vattenfall & Powercircle).

I have contacted all of these organizations, and they all keep referring me to PowerCircle, who I have not yet heard from. Hmm….

Trollhattan, Sweden, factory, that doesn’t seem to be deterring an unnamed group of Swedish investors who have apparently shown significant interest in acquiring the 62-year-old automaker.

“I cannot disclose who they are, but I can confirm that there is a group of investors in Sweden which has shown interest,” Saab spokesman Eric Geers told Automotive News.

Greers went on to say that Saab has been courted by six to eight “very large” – in his words – companies. The automaker has hired Deutsche Bank to seek out additional investors.

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General Motors Submittal To U.S. Treasury Extended Until 6pm, Followed By Press Conference At 6:30pm

Posted on 17. Feb, 2009 by .

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CNN Money reports that General Motors is now delaying their business plan submittal to the U.S. Treasury from 4pm to 6pm tonight.

It’s not surprising that General Motors cannot even meet a deadline, but I guess as long is it is taking place on the 17th, it’s okay.

Trollhattan Sweden’s TTELA, whom I just got off the phone with, also indicate that General Motors will have a press conference following this submittal, a half and hour later, at 6:30pm EST, which will be 12:30am for the folks in Sweden.

It’s going to be late night for us, but an even later night for the Swede’s who are 6 hours for those on the East Coast and 9 hours ahead of those on the West coast!

There’s nothing like dragging this news out until the 11th hour, almost quite literally in this instance today, whew!

Here is a loose translation from TTELA:

GM holds a press conference half a night

Tonight leaving General Motors its action to the U.S. Congress. Latest news is that GM intends to hold a press conference at its headquarters in Detroit at 0:30 GMT.

According to Detroit News says GM’s spokesman Tom Wilkinson plans to share their action plan after the stock market closed, that is, after 23 o’clock Swedish time.
According to the Detroit newspaper GM is planning to publish its plan around 23:30, followed by a press conference an hour later.
It is a more than 50-page document, with nearly 1 000 pages of appendices and the additional pages, which then lands in Washington.

We can assume that Saab will play a negligible, but for Sweden still incredibly important, part of the plan.
Data in recent days has increasingly pointed to the GM intends to separate the Saab in a separate company.
It is likely that it is the information we have to wait for Saab in the night.
In this case: What does it mean for Saab?
Firstly it is a marker from GM that Saab should be separated and, at best, to be sold.
[…]

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Saab Automobile Outline in GM Business Plan Must Show Substantial Swedish Operations & Sustainable Business Plan To Receive $1 Billion Dollars In Combined Loans

Posted on 11. Feb, 2009 by .

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Photo Credit: Mattson / Visit Sweden

Bloomberg is now reporting that GM is said to be seeking the Swedish Government to back $600 million dollars in European Investment bank loans to keep Saab Automobile just “operating” until it can be restructured for a sale.

This loan in concert with $400 million dollars from Sweden, would apparently allow Saab to launch all of their new models, such as the 9-3x Cross-Combi, the $100 million dollars for the next generation 9-5, and 9-4x and quite possibly even the 9-1 I hope.

So if my math is correct, there are the following loans and funding available and needed for Saab Automobile to succeed.

Loan: $600 Million USD from the European Investment Bank to keep operating.

Requirement (Summarization): Must Show Considerable Sustainability in Business & Products

Loan: $400 Million USD from Swedish Government to launch products now and in the future.

Requirement (Summarization): Must Show Majority of Business & Operations in Sweden

I guess this means that Saab Automobile AB, needs $1 Billion USD, which was just $400 more than GM bought them for back in December of 1989.

Since Saab Automobile has deep roots into Sweden, moving their products to their country of origin should be easier than one thinks, and secondly with Sweden a leader in environmental sustainability and Saab following suit, this really should not be as difficult as it is. Saab as part of their Saab-Scania business were creating electric & steam powered cars as well as wind turbines as far back as the nineteen seventies!, and fast forward to their interests in Bio-Hybrids in the near future, again, Saab Automobile should be well positioned to receive these loans.

The 400 lb gorilla in the room however is GM, because according to Saab Automobile’s Global Communication Director, Eric Geers, if these requirements are not best illustrated in the GM business plan, there will be tough consequences for Saab Automobile’s future.

What’s interesting about this “constant dialog” is where Eric Geers said that GM “must have” a plan by next Tuesday, which makes me think he’s talking in a sort of spirited hope that GM comes through. Furthermore, this makes me believe that this constant dialog is not as constant as one might think considering that quite possibly the folks at Saab Automobile in Sweden are “hoping” GM includes a plan for them, which I hope is not the scenario. As we know, allowing GM to be left to their own devices is not a situation anyone wants.

All in all, these loans require first and foremost, that the company have a majority of ownership and operations in Sweden and that their products are environmentally friendly and fully sustainable. This should be not problem for Saab unlike General Motors, so here’s hoping we get some positive results on Super Tuesday (February 17th, 2009)

Without further delay, here is the piece from Bloomberg:

GM Said to Seek Swedish Backing for $600 Million to Fix Saab

By Jeff Green and Niklas Magnusson

Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) — General Motors Corp. is asking Sweden to guarantee $600 million in European Investment Bank loans to keep the Saab Automobile unit operating until it can be restructured for sale, a person familiar with the talks said.

The loans, along with about $400 million (3.36 billion kronor) from GM, would allow Saab to introduce new models that would keep Saab competitive, said the person, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. If Saab doesn’t get the aid, it may be forced into restructuring under Swedish law, the person said.

[…]

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GM Asks FAA To Stop Tracking Flights Of Private Jets

Posted on 29. Nov, 2008 by .

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Photo Credit: Matthew Smith

Bloomberg, BBC & Aero News announces that General Motors, in an attempt to continue their isolation from the reality of the rest of the world, has instead of selling all of their private jets, have asked the FAA to stop tracking the flights of their private jets. These are the jets that GM executives fly including CEO, Rick Wagoneer as recently exhibuted during his visit to the United States Congress to beg for a no-strings handout.

General Motors and their leadership still do not get it. Why can’t they just get off of their “high horse” and they fly coach, drive or take public transportation like the rest of us? I am really starting to believe that their company is actually not in the dire straights that they are in because it takes a lot of money to fly and lease these private jets, so where is that money coming from exactly if they “don’t have any”?

Furthermore, for General Motors to request that the Federal Aviation Authority to bar the public (us & the media) from being able to track their flights is absolutely appalling and the epitome of arrogance. Message to General Motors: The 400 pound gorilla in the room is NOT that we can SEE you flying, it is the fact that you are FLYING these jets period!. Get a clue and start living a modest lifestyle so that you don’t take your company further into debt and wasting everyone’s money including, quite possibly the tax payers here in the United States!

As expected I checked to see if I could track one of their 8 jets with the registration N5116 from Aviation Air LLC in Danbury, CT and that website now shows “This flight is not available for tracking per request from the owner/operator”. No surprise! Anyone know the remaining 7 registration #’s for their private jets?

I leave you with Blogging Stocks best response to this appalling news as of late:

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM) just doesn’t get it. After flying in a corporate jet to Washington last week with tin cup in hand, its executives have not wised up. Rather than flying on public airlines like the rest of us do, they want to keep flying those corporate jets. But they want to make sure nobody in the public can track their flights.

If this is not the height of arrogance I don’t know what is. Bloomberg News interviewed a GM spokesman who said, “We availed ourselves of the option as others do to have the aircraft removed” from a Federal Aviation Administration tracking service. But he declined to discuss why GM made the request.

GM doesn’t need to explain why it made the request. I already know — it wants its executives to be able to keep flying on corporate jets and it doesn’t want Congress or the public to know about it. I think GM executives should consider three options: flying coach, getting the boot from the executive suite, or continuing to fly in their corporate jets until they run out of money.

If they pick the third option, they should not get a penny’s worth of taxpayer money.

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Saab Automobile AB Asks For Financial Support From Swedish Government

Posted on 18. Nov, 2008 by .

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Photo Credit: Saab History / 2003 (Stockholm)

According to Auto Motor & Sport, Saab Automobile AB and Volvo have asked the Swedish Government’s finance minister, Anders Borg hat, for financial support for their respective automotive industries if General Motors goes bankrupt.

CNN Money has also confirmed this story, with a statement from Eric Geers, Communications for Saab Automobile AB Global. “Saab spokesman Eric Geers confirmed that his company is also talking with the government about potential support, but declined to be more specific.”

Trollhättan, Sweden is where the Saab brand started, and where the current Saab 9-3 Sport Sedan, SportCombi as well as the final year of the 9-5 Sedan and SportCombi are produced.

Here is a rough translation of the article from German to English thanks to Babelfish.

Sweden’s Ministers of Finance, Anders Borg Hat has on Monday (17,11.) stated that there are possible state aids for the heavy losses automakers Volvo and Saab have been announcing. Borg said in Stockholm with the conception of a new economic situation prognosis, ” purposeful management” could be necessary for the stabilization of the job market. It did not call details. Saab belongs along with OPEL of Germany, to the tightely connected US auto group, General Motors. Also Volvos mother company, Ford in the United States fights with high losses. Because of their traditional emphasis with premium passenger vehicles, the Swedish enterprises are considered endangered.

This also includes the SCANIA & Volvo truck section and suppliers about 150,000 workers are busy in the Swedish automobile industry. Borg explained, his government counts on a rise of unemployment from at present four per cent on up to 9,2 per cent in the year 2010.

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