Saab’s financials from the first six months of 2011 are in, and the numbers aren’t good. Swedish Automobile (Swan), parent to both Saab and Spyker, has reported a loss of $288 million in the first half, with a loss of $175 million occurring in the second quarter alone.
Sales for the first half of the year totaled $513 million, but there was a huge decline between the first and second quarters. In Q1, Swan posted sales of $367 million, but by Q2 that number had dropped to just $146 million. Consumer confidence was likely the driving force in the decline: Saab ceased production at their Trollhattan plant in April, after suppliers cut off component deliveries due to unpaid invoices.
Victor Muller, Saab CEO, announced that payment of salaries for Saab employees would again be delayed, and gave his sincere apologies to those affected. If there’s a ray of hope on the horizon, it’s this: Saab is reportedly close to securing a loan (from an unnamed European bank) worth $157 million, which may allow them to pay salaries and suppliers, averting the possibility of bankruptcy. It should even allow Saab to resume production in the coming weeks.
Longer term, Saab has commitments worth an estimated $350 million from Chinese partners Pang Da and Youngman Automotive Group. Both deals require approval from the Chinese government, which has been reluctant to sign off on partnerships between Chinese companies and foreign automakers.