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Super car maker Koenigsegg to buy Saab

Swedish high-end car maker Saab is close to being sold to super car manufacturer Koenigsegg as Saab’s owner GM looks to cut ties with the brand and make itself more of a viable business.  Saab, which was put up for sale by its now bankrupt US parent, had been in talks with two or three bidders in the past weeks with Deutsche Bank advising in the sales process. 

It’s estimated that Saab required $1 billion in financing to overhaul its production and enabled it to launch new models.  Part of the funding would involve increasing efficiency allowing it to become profitable although it’s estimated that it would take until 2011 for this to happen.  Saab employs 3,000 staff at 87 UK dealerships but went into bankruptcy in February trying to find a new owner.  Dealers were confident that a buyer would be found or that the Swedish government would bail out Saab.

GM is rumoured to be exclusive sale talks with the Norwegian owned Koenigsegg stating that a deal with a “primary candidate” was likely to be signed by early summer.  Koenigsegg beat bids from Renco, US investor Ira Rennert’s holding company, and Merbanco, a group of private investors in Wyoming. In all, around ten groups toured Saab’s plant in Trollhättan near Gothenburg.  The parties have signed a letter of intent leaving only minor issues still to be resolved.

Koenigsegg, founded by Christian von Koenigsegg in 1994 with the intention of producing a world-class super car and sold 18 cars in 2008.  The manufacturer is based in Ängelholm and spent years developing and prototyping to finally produce it’s street-legal production car in 2002.  Koenigsegg is also active in green technologys and involved in the development of plug-in electrical cars systems and next generation combustion engine technologies.

The development follows the GM of the sale of the brands it owns, including Hummer to China’s Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery and of Saturn to the dealership chain, Penske Automotive Group.  Since GM bought its stake in Saab in 1990, Saab has never produced a profit from the investment with Saab sales contributing just over one per cent of GM’s total sales volume in 2008.

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One Response to “Super car maker Koenigsegg to buy Saab”

  1. You have my full support and I absolutely think this will be the best thing for saab,back in swedish hand after the americans screwed up saab! I have owned 26 saabs over the past 30 years and the are the bestt cars built! You have my full support and I feel quite confident in saab’s future!

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