deals seem to be falling through left and right. At the start
of last month, news broke that the sale of the Saturn brand to Penske
Automotive Group (PAG) had fallen through, leaving
the brand to die.
Now, Swedish supercar maker
Koenigsegg Group AB has pulled
out of its deal
to buy struggling Swedish luxury car brand Saab. The move
puts Saab's future seriously in question. Koenigsegg cited many
reasons for pulling out, but wouldn't reveal what those reasons
were. One possibility is that its financing for the purchase
fell through. Another possibility is that it got scared off by
the vanish number of Saab dealers internationally.
unlikely to want to keep Saab - Saab has almost never turned a profit for GM and
it doesn't fit with GM's vision of making Cadillac its global luxury
brand (and doesn't contribute much in the way of unique engineering
assets). Thus GM must scramble to find a new buyer while the
brand is kept on life support by the Swedish government. If it
fails, the likely outcome is that the brand will be killed, just like
One possible buyer is Beijing Auto Industry Co., who
originally made a bid on the brand, but lost to Koenigsegg. The
Chinese firm now seems more cautious following the fallout of the
Koenigsegg-Saab union, stating that it will now "cautiously
reconsider" making a new bid.
Even if the Chinese don't
buy the whole firm, they'll likely opt to at least pick up the the
assets to the already tooled-up, forthcoming 9-5 sedan.
Regardless of what happens, the latest failed deal is a major
disappointment and setback for a recovering GM. States GM
President and CEO, Fritz Henderson, "We're obviously very
disappointed with the decision to pull out of the Saab purchase.
Many have worked tirelessly over the past several months to create a
sustainable plan for the future of Saab by selling the brand and its
manufacturing interests to Koenigsegg Group AB. Given the sudden
change in direction, we will take the next several days to assess the
situation and will advise on the next steps next week."