Saab and Spyker
Saab must feel like the bridesmaid, never the bride by now. Failed negotiations to sell the franchise are making the turkey vultures swirl. But in the 11th hour, in the eve of the orderly wind-down, little Dutch sports car company from the Netherlands has stepped back in to give Saab a chance at survival.
Who is Spyker?
According to Automotive News, Spyker sold 43 cars last year for at least 200,000 euros ($287,800).
The Moscow Times says that the primary backers of Spyker include Russian banking tycoon Vladimir Antonov and his Convers Group, which has a 29.8 percent stake in the firm. Convers Group controls 29.8 percent of Spyker after Konversbank, which ceased to exist in 2008, bought the stake in 2007. Konversbank was merged with Investbank, a subsidiary of Convers Group.
Alexander Antonov, who heads Convers Group, is currently on Investbank’s supervisory board, while his son Vladimir is the bank’s deputy CEO. It was Alexander that was shot last March, in Moscow but survived.
Vladimir Antonov is also the current chairman of Spyker Cars’ supervisory board.
Jeroen Willard, an analyst at Dutch brokerage AEK, told Automotive News that for Spyker to finance the deal it would likely issue shares to its Russian backers.
Automotive News, is reporting that some of its (Saabs) assets, including intellectual property, have been sold to a Chinese automaker, Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Corp (BAIC). BAIC, China’s fifth-largest automaker, said separately it would launch an aggressive campaign to develop it’s brand both at home and overseas, after buying the rights to old Saab models from GM for $200 million.
“Someone has commented that the purchase of Saab’s intellectual property can help cut short the development time for Beijing Auto’s own-brand passenger vehicles by four to five years,” BAIC Chairman Xu Heyi told Automotive News reporters,
“We basically agree with the view,” Xu said
The Chinese automaker plans to immediately start integrating Saab technology into its vehicles, with an aim to sell 100,000 self-developed passenger vehicles in 2011, Xu told Automotive News.
Here is the press release from Spyker Cars: