• Jan 8, 2010
According to a press release quoted in Dow Jones Newswires, Stefan Lofven, head of Swedish trade union IF Metall, the board of Saab has voted today to liquidate the company. Simultaneously, General Motors has announced that it has hired AlixPartners to supervise the "orderly wind-down" of the marque.

Interestingly, none of this means that Saab is dead, although certainly neither of these things can be seen as reason for optimism. According to its own statement about AlixPartners (available after the jump), GM continues to evaluate bids for Saab, presumably those from Spyker Cars and Genii Capital/Bernie Ecclestone – if not others as well. To this, Lofven is quoted as remarking that "It is irresponsible of GM in this situation to act in two directions, both towards a sale and towards a wind-down." Irresponsible or no, that appears to be exactly what GM is doing. More as it happens...

[Sources: Dow Jones Newswires via The Wall Street Journal, General Motors | Image: Joe Raedle/Getty]

PRESS RELEASE

GM STATEMENT REGARDING SAAB

GM today confirmed it has selected AlixPartners to supervise the orderly wind down of Saab, and has requested approval of the selection by the appropriate authority in Sweden. The use of a wind down supervisor is a commonly-used process in Sweden and works in the interest of the shareholder.

The wind down process is expected to take several months, and will ensure that employees, dealers and suppliers are adequately protected. As stated previously, Saab customers can be assured that warranties will continue to be honored and that service and spare parts will continue to be available.

GM also confirmed that it has received several proposals for Saab and is continuing to evaluate these proposals. This evaluation is not affected by the appointment of AlixPartners.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 34 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Actually, all of that means that Saab is dead. That's what liquidation is. Saab has been a zombie brand for years, it's about time it was put out of it's misery. It's for the best really. The Saabs everyone truly loves have already been made. Just like Pontiac.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Saab would still need enthusiastic, well-heeled car buyers - something that been sorely lacking of late.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Dude you just won't go away. Your comments are ridiculous and short sighted. Everytime you post you make some bone headed comment proclaiming Saab is dead, only to be proven that negotiations are ongoing. You are the very definition of an internet troll. Did a Saab driver steal a girlfriend of yours in the past or something? Run over your dog? It's really sad, man.

        Liquidation takes time to implement, and just as Saab was broken into 5 separate pieces for legal clarity before even the Koenigsegg Group sale fell through, liquidation needs to be initiated regardless of GM choosing to accept a bid. But once again your legal acumen and expertise shines through– I'm sure your proclamation that "Saab is dead. That is what liquidation is" is based in a strong understanding of international bankruptcy and liquidation laws. Genius.

        The most important part of this statement:

        "GM also confirmed that it has received several proposals for Saab and is continuing to evaluate these proposals. This evaluation is not affected by the appointment of AlixPartners."

        In other words, GM is just protecting their ass just in case they choose to continue the wind down. That's going to be hard with the presence of strong bids.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sabb is dead
      • 5 Years Ago
      A General Motors insider said GM would not accept any bid submitted and thus started "a wind-down" of Saab. The move sparked protests from Sweden (www.saab.us.com).

      GM apparently was never seriously considering selling SAAB.

      So sad.

      And ... not good.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Ouch.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Can someone please explain to me why GM would rather close down SAAB and be left with nothing instead of selling SAAB for $20 dollars and putting $20 dollars in their pocket? There must be something that I am not getting because to me, I would rather sell something for alot less than I want for it instead of just throwing it away. Isn't any sale at any price going to net them more money than just closing it down?
        • 5 Years Ago
        GM would rather spend several hundred million dollars shutting SAAB down, and it will cost several hundred million over a few years to kill SAAB as it cost over a billion dollars to kill Oldsmobile, then risk have SAAB as a competitor to Opel in Europe or another competitor in the US.

        They would rather spend that few hundred million dollars to wind down the brand and cover parts and service over the next seven years then get a few hundred million now for the SAAB brand.

        There is also the SAAB technology that they fear getting into the hands of another company. That wasn't a problem for Hummer because none of their technology was up to date all of it was ancient.
        • 5 Years Ago
        If the Saab brand name is only worth a pittance, it's probably better to simply hold it for better days to prevent a competitor from being able to capitalize on it later.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe GM is playing a game to get more money for the brand.
      keep saying and showing that they are closing - so people will increase their offers.
      like a Mexican standoff.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Or the "Going Out of Business" store in Zohan?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Just to put off some of the pessimism about the liquidation proceedings, GM has said that they were going to initiate liquidation proceedings this week anyway, and the decision was probably made even before the good bids came in. It takes a while for Sweden to approve the lawyer-liquidator anyway, so this is not an immediate decision anyway, there is no control yet. Therefore if a bid is accepted or chosen to be worked with in the next week, the liquidator may never actually even have control of the company.

      Seeing that the bids have only been in GM's hands for a little under a day (and only 4 hours of the business day) there really isn't much new news here. Only that if Saab is going to survive, it GM needs to make a decision in the next week. In light of the Detroit Auto Show and presence of Swedish government officials, along with pressure from US representatives, GM is not in a position to refuse good bids that save US taxpayers money.
      • 5 Years Ago
      How much of a farse can GM make out of this!? It is like a parody and GM is just wasting peoples time and money! I really do not understand what GM thinks when they destroy there best Brand! All the other cars are just crap! I had the displeasure of driving a Chevy and they are worse then the Korean cars like Kia Cee or the Hyundai i30. GM is dead and they are just trying to get as pay as little as they can as the WHOLE company dies! I mean who on earth is going to pay for a Volt!? I will get a soild build German or Japanese car or a cheap Chinese or Korean car oh or a Skoda much better value for money!
      • 5 Years Ago
      "It is irresponsible of GM in this situation to act in two directions, both towards a sale and towards a wind-down."

      Irresponsible? I don't think so.
      GM announced earlier that Saab would be would down at the end of December. So, the plans were already rolling to enact this eventuality. Late under-the-wire new bids for Saab surfaced that caused a small delay in the proceedings.

      It is quite evident that GM is preparing for the worst, but still allowing certain parties to step forward and resurrect the ailing brand if at all possible.

      GM is covering all the bases, just in case. This shows due diligence and not irresponsibility IMHO.
      • 5 Years Ago
      what they should have done is killed buick and made saab into the new world class luxury

      would've been a better sell to younger people
        • 5 Years Ago
        Believe it or not Buicks actually sell, at this time they need something that sells.

        I wish GM would just be honest and say they will sell SAAB, but the only thing you actually get is the factory without any machinery, the name rights, and the privilege of performing sexual favors for Ed Whitacre and Bob Lutz in the back seat of a Ponitac Aztek.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hey guys something has been lost in translation here!!! I'm from Sweden and I've read the statements from the SAAB people. What happened today after the SAAB board meeting is that they told the press that GM had told SAAB to get a liquidator. The board of SAAB has absolutely not voted for a liquidation of SAAB. They still hope for a sale ofcourse.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Where does AB get its lede from anyway then???

        Thanks Viking for the heads up!
        • 5 Years Ago
        That makes more sense. I couldn't figure out why Saab's board would vote to liquidate when there are several offers for the Brand.
      • 5 Years Ago
      So Chinese still end up with Saab brand and tooling regardless.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Chinese didn't end up with the brand. Just the tooling and designs for old models.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I actually had no idea what a Saab was up until I went to a Cadillac dealer. It was a Cadillac/Saab dealer.

      ... Then again I was maybe 7 or 8.
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