BAIC Cautious" About Saab
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.
Somehow I still don't like the idea of Saab going away. But seems I'll have to get used.
GM can wind down Saab and spend tens, maybe hundreds of million doing that or they can sell it for tens of millions and make a little cash...or they can sell Saab and use that money for R&D, reviving Saturn or Pontiac or...put that money in cash-on-hand. Either way, for GM to wind it down now is a lose-lose....selling it to someone for even a discounted price is at least a lose-win. Personally, I'd would miss Saab and even Volvo if they went away but if the market for their somewhat unique vehicles just isn't there, it just isn't there.