2011 Saab 9-5Enlarge Photo
This is shaping up to be a good week for automaker Saab and parent Swedish Automobile. Just yesterday we told you about a mysterious Chinese firm which paid cash in advance for some 582 vehicles, worth approximately $18.4 million. That was enough capital for Saab to meet payroll, but it wasn’t enough for them to pay off all suppliers and restart production.
Now comes word that a group of Swedish real estate investors will purchase 50.1 percent of Saab’s property holdings for $39.65 million, giving the company money in the bank to negotiate with suppliers. The real estate deal also allows Saab to borrow an additional $80 million from the European Investment Bank, and the investment group has the right to purchase an additional $7 million worth of Saab’s property holdings.
While this may generate enough cash to pay off suppliers and resume production, Saab’s long-term health is still dependent upon funding from Chinese investors such as Pangda and Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile. Deals with both companies are pending approval by the Chinese government, and Russian investor Vladimir Antonov stands ready with cash if approved by the European Investment Bank. Saab may be down, but they’re not out just yet.