China’s BAIC said ”it will cautiously evaluate the situation regarding the sale of General Motors Co.’s Saab Automobile unit after Swedish sportscar maker Koenigsegg Group AB backed out of a deal to buy Saab,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
BAIC wanted to take a minority stake in Koenigsegg, to help the boutique carmaker buy Saab. There were suspicions that Koenigsegg was not more than a straw man that made a Chinese takeover of Saab more palatable, but those suspicions have now evaporated.
International development “has always been an important strategic goal for Beijing Auto,” BAIC said in a statement. “In light of Koenigsegg’s withdrawal, we will cautiously re-evaluate the situation and make appropriate plans.”
In Chinese, that sounds like a “no.” Or at best like a “come back with a better offer.”
Business Week, always a bit removed from reality, calls the abandoned deal “a setback for China’s auto industry’s global ambitions.” Oh Lord.