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Saab owner files creditor protection with Swedish court

National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS), now owner of Saab, has filed an application with a Swedish court for short-term protection from creditors while it concludes financing discussions with two major carmakers. NEVS resumed in 2013 low-volume output of Saab but stopped production in May saying it does not have enough cash to pay its outstanding debt.

NEVS has been holding discussions with two undisclosed carmakers to secure additional funds. NEVS President Mattias Bergman said in a statement that the negotiations the Chinese company has with two global carmakers are still progressing.

He remarked talks are complex and have taken more time than NEVS predicted. He added that the company needs more time to complete the negotiations and reach an agreement. NEVS has around 400 suppliers of direct materials and 500 suppliers of indirect materials.

Read the entire article Saab owner files creditor protection with Swedish court

Saab owner wants to restart production at Trollhattan site

National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS), Saab’s new owner, wants to restart production at the carmaker’s closed factory in Trollhattan, Sweden later this year. NEVS spokesman Mikael Oestlund Oestlund told Automotive News Europe that Saab’s Trollhattan site is "practically ready" to commence building the 9-3 mid-sized car.

He added that the company has hired around 300 people, including team leaders, to oversee assembly of the vehicles. NEVS, which is owned by a Chinese renewable energy investor, bought Saab out of bankruptcy in August 2012. According to Oestlund, the 9-3 that will be built will be very similar to the 9-3 that Saab halted building in 2011.

He said that the petrol version of the 9-3 would be a turbocharged one. He added that Saab plans to launch an electric version of the 9-3 in 2014, which would feature a more inclusive face-lift. The 9-3 electric version will use batteries built by NEVS sister company Beijing National Battery Technology.

Read the entire article Saab owner wants to restart production at Trollhattan site

Saab keeps legal protection from creditors

For the meantime, Saab can still be legally protected from creditors, according to the court-appointed lawyer that oversees a reconstruction process for the automaker. This comes after General Motors Co. denied a Chinese bid to take over Saab. Last Monday, GM said that it will halt supplying parts and technology to Saab if the two Chinese companies successfully acquire the Swedish company.

This statement mirrors GM’s hardening stance to oppose the proposed sale of Saab. It also casts doubts on the survival of the niche brand, which was under court protection from creditors since September.

In a Reuters interview, court-appointed administrator Guy Lofalk said that the company will seek some clarity on the implications of GM’s decision.

Read the entire article Saab keeps legal protection from creditors

Saab asks Swedish court to pull the plug on bankruptcy protection

Hours after an investment firm pledged cash to Saab, the administrator responsible for its reorganization asked a Swedish court last Thursday to pull the plug on bankruptcy protectiocarn. For several months, Saab has been trying to fight off bankruptcy. It had expected that creditor protection would give it enough time to restructure as it waits for Chinese investors to give new funds.

However, there would be little chance of it surviving if the court believes that the reconstruction efforts failed. According to Saab administrator Guy Lofalk, there is insufficient money for the reorganization to continue running.

He then asked a Swedish court to end the entire process. He added that the original reorganization plan and its financing strategy have not materialized yet.

Read the entire article Saab asks Swedish court to pull the plug on bankruptcy protection

Saab, a Swedish vehicle manufacturer, is taking part in this year's Scandinavian Show on October 8 and 9 at Earls Court in London, wherein the very best that the Nordic countries can offer are showcased such as the top fashion brands, the edgiest entertainment, remarkable food and innovative design. The company will have a range of vehicles to display at the event, including the 9-5 Saloon, which is Saab’s most advanced vehicle to date.

The company will also have its iconic Saab 9-3 Convertible, which will be celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Saab GB's Managing Director Charles Toosey revealed.

The iconic Convertible started production in 1986 with just 400 Saab 900 Convertibles coming off the line. Since then, the company's iconic soft top has played a leading role in shaping the automotive landscape.

Read the entire article Saab announces its presence at the 2011 Scandinavian Show

After concluding that a reconstruction (a new creditor protection process) will not work, the Vanersborg district court in western Sweden rejected Saab’s application to be protected from creditors so that it could have some breathing space to acquire funds from Chinese investors and work out its cash problems. Saab released a statement to express its disappointment with the ruling. Saab will file an appeal over this decision.

In 2009-2010, Saab had gone through this process during the period when General Motors was still its owner. The current owner of Saab, Swedish Automobile NV, sought the protection of the court so that creditors' payment demands won’t force the automaker into bankruptcy and will give it time to implement its plan to secure its future.

Saab filed for bankruptcy protection last Wednesday via a voluntary reorganization process that would have meant that the court will appoint an administrator for the reorganization of the company.

Read the entire article Swedish court rejected Saab application for protection from creditors

As Saab’s problems persist, its dealers in the U.S. are faced with a shortage in products, parts, and consumer interest. As a result, they are now making plans for a non-Saab future.

Production was stopped last March when suppliers halted delivery of parts in Trollhattan, Sweden, due to non-payment. Since then, Saab’s production workers have not been paid. Collection proceedings began last week by the Swedish government upon the request of some suppliers.

Swedish Automobile CEO Victor Muller has told dealers that Saab is about to secure bridge funding that will tide Saab over until mid-October and so they should remain optimistic, according to Autonews.

Read the entire article Saab dealers starting to lose interest in the Swedish brand

The Debt Enforcement Agency of Sweden will begin a collection procedure against Saab Automobile on Wednesday. It could freeze the automaker’s assets unless the company pays around $620,000 Tuesday to two suppliers, an official disclosed. Hans Ryberg, a division chief at the state agency, reveals that the collection procedure would include an investigation on the automaker’s bank accounts and probably on other assets.

Norway-based manufacturer of car-seat components, Kongsberg Automotive AB, is one of the two companies that Saab must pay Tuesday to prevent the collection procedure.

Ryberg disclosed that the "big majority" of the money is owed to Kongsberg. Sweden-based consulting firm Infotiv AB is another company that Saab must pay Tuesday. The automaker was forced to stop vehicle production during the late part of March due to a shortage in cash.

Read the entire article Sweden’s Debt Enforcement Agency to start a collection process against Saab

The Debt Office of Sweden is awaiting the response of Saab with regard to the company’s latest rescue plan that will produce the much-needed finances through a proposed change of ownership.

The Debt Office has asked questions about the company and the new owners, Daniel Barr, Debt Office head of bank support and project leader for Saab, disclosed to Reuters.

According to the latest rescue plan, Hawtai, a privately owned Chinese group, will take a 29.9 percent ownership in the company, pending approval from the government of China.

Read the entire article Saab asked by Sweden’s debt office to fill in gaps in its latest rescue plan

Saab has been given a helping hand by Sweden, which had offered conditional backing for an agreement to free up cash. Last year, Spyker saved Saab but it faced a drop in 2010 sales, resulting to a cash-crunch in 2011. Saab was forced to suspend production since two weeks ago as it had failed to make payments to suppliers.

In a news conference, Enterprise Minister Maud Olofsson said that the Debt Office has been allowed to conclude an agreement with Saab.

The government approved a proposal from the Debt Office to let Saab sell real estate, including the production plant, to Russian financier Vladimir Antonov and then lease it back. Initially, this deal will bring 30 million euros to Saab; however, the value of the real estate is actually a lot higher.

Read the entire article Sweden ready to help Saab, with some conditions

Vladimir Antonov, a Russian financier, has showed optimism through a Twitter posting on Friday as Saab is close to entering an agreement with the Debt Office of Sweden that will help resolve the carmaker’s short-term financial problems.

A day before Antonov’s comment, the Debt Office stated that it could concur to release collateral for Spyker, Saab’s parent company, to gain the finances needed to resolve problems with unpaid bills to suppliers and to bring back production in the automakers’ plants.

"Ok now:)nearly done:)keep fingers cross!!!" were the words of Antonov in a Twitter post. The Russian businessman also hopes to eventually become a stakeholder in Saab again after he was forced to leave the original deal for Spyker to purchase Saab from General Motors.

Read the entire article Vladimir Antonov shows optimism regarding Sweden’s help for Saab

Sweden’s Finance Minister Anders Borg said that he wants more clarity on Spyker’s plans (especially its financial solution) on what’s to become of Saab. This statement made it apparent that there won’t be a quick deal between Sweden and Spyker to resolve Saab’s cash problems.

Saab’s plant has been shuttered for nearly two weeks as it’s unable to continue production after suppliers demanded that they be paid before they resume the supply.

Borg said that there could be significant remaining complications to this difficult matter.

Read the entire article Sweden’s Finance Minister Anders Borg asks Saab to clarify financial plans

Spyker Cars NV's Saab Automobile has entered an agreement with Sweden's government to set up a venture to develop transmissions for the auto industry. Saab and Fouriertransform AB, the government’s venture-capital firm, will create a staff composed of about 50 engineers from Saab’s powertrain division, the companies recently said in a joint statement on Fouriertransform's Web site.

The companies said that the venture to be formed in 2011, will develop transmission systems like gearboxes, for Saab and other carmakers.

The new company will be called VICURA and will be based in Saab’s hometown of Trollhaettan. Saab CEO Jan-Aake Jonsson said that the venture will drive down the company's break-even point and improve operational efficiency as it works toward becoming a profitable, independent company.

Read the entire article Saab and Sweden create venture to develop transmissions for the auto industry

The government of Vastra Gotaland in western Sweden has requested the assistance of the government's debt collector to recover $15.9 million it spent to support Saab.

The regional authority had helped cover wages when Saab Automobile was under administration before it was sold to Dutch group Spyker Cars NV. Saab's main production plant is located in western Sweden.

Saab has yet to comment on this report but Spyker's CEO Victor Muller has called this as “nothing of concern” and that it will be treated like any legal dispute.

Read the entire article Swedish authority seeking return of $15.9 million from Saab

Saab has to pay $15 million to the government of Sweden by Sept. 20 or Sweden's Vastra Gotaland region will ask the Swedish Enforcement Authority, the public debt collector, to enforce payment.

This bill covers the period when Saab Automobile was under administration and the government of Vastra Gotaland in western Sweden, where Saab's main production plant is located.

The government had to step in to cover wages. Last Monday, Vastra Gotaland Governor Lars Backstrom said that Saab owed it 110.7 million crowns ($15.3 million). Saab and its parent, Dutch group Spyker Cars NV, said that company should only be required to pay part of the amount asked for.

Read the entire article Report: Saab must pay its $15 million bill from the government by Sept. 20

The goal of the Swedish carmaker this year is to be come a fully independent company in the next six months and to do this it has to declare bankruptcy.

After a meeting with Swedish unions, Han Ake Jonnson said that they will continue to explore all possible options for funding and/or vending Saab and it was decided that a reorganization would be the ideal means by which to create a truly independent body that is geared up for new investments.

GM, the owner of Saab, wants to remove itself from the Swedish car company, and Saab has filed for a reorganization under a self-managed Swedish legal procedure.

Read the entire article Saab to become a fully independent company

Last month there were 27 in the list of potential buyers, but the Swedish automaker Saab says that it has narrowed that down to two or three and expects the sale to be reached in the summer of this year.

Rumors that GM was going to maintain Saab because of the forecasted success of the 2010 9-5 was silenced by the carmaker in a webcast this morning.

GM has pledged that whoever will own Saab will receive support for the upcoming 9-5 and 9-4 models, but seeing GM at the helm of an emerging Saab is already out of the question.

Read the entire article Saab sale to be reached in the summer of this year

According to a Swedish minister Saab may still require loan guarantees from the Swedish government in spite of its impending takeover by Koenigsegg.

This is because the government is uncertain at this point in just how much cash Koenigsegg is ready to inject into the struggling carmaker. Saab may also need crucial loans from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to guarantee its future, which the government should ensure.

GM, the parent company of Saab, struck a deal with niche supercar manufacturer Koenigsegg to sell Saab. However, the key element, that is, the amount of money Koenigsegg is willing to put into Saab, has not been disclosed.

Read the entire article Saab may still require aid from Swedish government

NEVS has recently released photos of its updated 9-3 Series, and guess what? It is now powered by an all-electric powertrain, which means that it’s another candidate to look out for in the EV segment.

National Electric Vehicle Sweden or NEVS, in collaboration with Tianjin Binhai Hi-tech Industrial Development Area, recently announced the launching of its new car-sharing and ride hailing program which will be run in Tianjin, a Chinese metropolis with an estimated 15 million population. The program will allow customers to access this new lineup of 9-3 EV series, providing both the vehicle as well as the mobility services (delivery of the vehicle).

The Swiss company is also planning to release two other models which include the classic four-door saloon and a jacked-up wagon version, the 9-3X EV.

Read the entire article NEVS presents new (Saab) 9-3 Series Concept in China

The next generation Volvo XC60 will be soon on its way to dealerships and customers as the Swedish carmaker has already commenced production of the mid-sized sports utility vehicle at its Torslanda facility in Sweden. In fact, the very first customer-bound Volvo XC60 has already rolled off the production line. This particular XC60 is a petrol-powered T5 Inscription AWD model wrapped in Crystal White exterior finish.

Magnus Nilsson, vice president of the Torslanda facility, remarked that they spent several months to thoroughly prepare the assembly site for the new 2018 Volvo XC60, adding that they are now ready to commence deliveries to customers.

Underpinned by Volvo’s self-developed Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), the new Volvo XC60 builds on the success of the first-generation model. It is the fourth model underpinned by this platform, which also underpins the 90 series. With almost a million examples already sold globally in the nine years since its launch in 2008, the first-gen XC60 was considered as the No. 1 premium mid-sized SUV in Europe, in terms of sales. In fact, the XC60 accounts for around 30 percent of the carmaker’s global volume. The second-gen XC60 is going up against the likes of Audi Q5, BMW X3 and the Jaguar F-Pace.

Read the entire article Volvo starts production of XC60 at its Torslanda assembly site in Sweden