GM Challenges Chinese Acquisition Of Saab

Danny Choy
by Danny Choy

Saab‘s matchmaking saga is the stuff of cinema. Facing compounding financial dilemmas and a series of unsuccessful talks with a number of investors, the troubled Swedish automaker had little going for it. Just as Saab was close to finally making a deal with its Chinese investors, Pang Da Automobile Trade Co. and Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co., the company faces yet another challenge that may prevent the deal from happening.

General Motors Co., the former owner of Saab, is looking to prevent the Chinese acquisition. GM spokeswoman Renee Rashid-Merem claims, “GM would not be able to support a change in the ownership of Saab which could negatively impact GM’s existing relationships in China or otherwise adversely affect GM’s interests worldwide.”

Removing Saab during its 2009 bankruptcy restructuring, GM still owns the technology that Saab uses to produce two of its models. Also, GM has built the 9-4X in Mexico for Saab this year. If bought by Pang Da Automobiles and Youngman Lotus, GM is concerned for the intellectual property that is licensed to Saab.

As roadblocks mount, it is becoming clear that time is running out for Saab. The Swedish brand sold 49,000 units in the United States in 2003 and have now dropped to only 5,800 models sold for 2010 nearly a 90-percent decrease. Through October, only 4,984 units have been sold in the United States so far this year.

[source: Detroit News]

Danny Choy
Danny Choy

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  • Mike Mike on Nov 07, 2011

    It sounds like sour grapes on GM's part. If we can't make it your not going to be given the chance. Perhaps they can't stand the competition.

  • Joe Costa Joe Costa on Nov 19, 2011

    This is typical of corporate greed! The taxpayers got GM out of the hole and I would think that GM would excersice understanding and appreciation so as to help all the employees within the Saab network survive! Afterall, Saabs technology was above GM's and GM is the reason that Saab is in this predicament. Case and point example is the relationship that Ford had with Volvo during it's years of ownership, where they didn't hurt Volvo but allowed them to prosper and in turn, Ford benefited from Volvo's technology! GM on the other hand, excersised they're typical "know it all" mind set with respect to Saab and as they have been doing for decades; where they've always believed that they knew what was best for consumer and therefore were very poor at listening to their wants and needs. As a result they not only attributed to their demise, but Sabb's as well! In summary; for GM to say that they are preventing the sale to protect their technology is hogwash! Shame on you General Motors, you're not deserving of the opportunity that was given to you by the American people and we will not stand by quietly!