• Jan 19, 2011
General Motors still owns a hefty chunk of shares in Saab. So many shares that it was actually able to block Vladamir Antonov from being a shareholder. Mr. Antonov is the Chairman of Conversbank Financial Group, which owns a major stake in Dutch automaker Spyker, and he has expressed a desire to be part of Saab. Now, GM is reportedly ready for him to take a financial interest in the company.

GM's hesitation came due to reports that Mr. Antonov was involved in organized crime. Antonov states that he was the target of false allegations and has since cleared his name through the use of private investigators. In the past, Antonov spoke about opening a Saab manufacturing plant in Kaliningrad, Russia.

[Source: The Straits Times | Image: Chris Paukert/AOL]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      Saab automobiles was never suppost to a huge car company. They made a few models that had design changes every few years. Those changes would bring big changes to cars underpinnings makeing the cars better. Once GM got ahold of it and stated making saabaru's and and rebaged trailblazers they killed the company. If these new owners can keep their hands out of the cookie jar the company should be able to come back in a short time.
      • 3 Years Ago
      The west should give moral permission to the east for wild capitalism. Everything in Russia is lowless from the government through police to the big business. But as an initial investment I prefer private money from source like this alleged criminal here over the honest taxpayers' money GM received from the government. Don't forget how capitalism has begun in North America!
      • 3 Years Ago
      Now in different (but related?) news, GM's CEO Dan Akerson received a Fedex Pack containing the head of his favorite horse with a thank you note.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'd suspect the original story is correct...very few high profile Russian businessmen that AREN'T connected to organized crime...It's a way of life in Mother Russia!
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why would they open another Saab plant when they can barely sell the cars they are making already?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Alex: China and India have large import duties. It's cheaper to build a factory there then import the cars. (assuming you are planning on selling more then a few hundreds.)
        @HOC: Labor is cheaper in Russia, I have a feeling as the brand expands they will not be opening new factories in Sweden
        • 3 Years Ago
        I read he was planning a cheaper car for eastern Europe, which I don't like the sounds of.
      • 3 Years Ago
      You guys made a mistake, from when Spyker bought Saab:

      "GM will get $326 million in preferred shares in the new company that will be formed and named Saab Spyker Automobiles following the transaction. GM's holding will represent less than 1 per cent of the voting rights in Saab Spyker Automobiles."

      So GM has no voting rights but has to grant permission in this specific case with Antonov.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Can you spell RICO Act? Antonov will use this for money laundering and the Justice Department will hammer him...and it won't be entrapment.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Can you say "US law is not applicable in other countries"?
      • 3 Years Ago
      ...and now Saab needs more cash to keep running at its current sales level and GM (being on the Board) knows it. It's the whole desperate times, desperate measures thing. I've got my fingers crossed for Saab but what they really need more than the new 9-5 and 9-4x is a new 9-3 that's even remotely competitive. I'm sure Muller knows this better than anyone. The current car might as well not exist. $45K for a 9-3 Convertible Aero that makes 210hp? At least the Aero used to offer a V6 with more power to justify the price. At least you can still get it with a manual transmission.

      I proudly wore my SAVE SAAB paraphernalia a year ago and would love nothing more than to buy a new Saab 9-3 (especially if there was a new Turbo-X or Viggen model available) but I just can't imagine passing up a 328/335 or A4/S4 for the current model.