Saab News Trollhättan: The Hawtai deal is shaking

Last week, a delegation of Chinese automaker Hawtai visited Saab production in Trollhättan. Then suddenly strange silence prevailed. Joy about the found partner does not look like that.

Today we know that they were shocked by the poor economic condition of the factory. Until today at 14.00 o'clock the contracts must be signed, otherwise the deal has burst.

The Chinese are considering, several sources report, renegotiate or withdraw completely from the business. Saab CEO Victor Muller seems already to expect the termination of the business relationship, is already on the plunge into the People's Republic to continue negotiations with other manufacturers. The situation is more precocious, as the quick and perhaps hasty deal with Hawtai has left scorched earth in China.

The manufacturer BAIC, Saab partner for older Saab technologies, wanted to take over Saab completely, but failed at the veto of Vladimir Antonov. On the other hand, BAIC sees itself as the owner of the rights to the upcoming Saab 9-3 successor and would, that is likely, block the Saab - Hawtai marriage at the NDRC for a long time with this claim.

Also very embarrassed by the sudden termination of the talks and the announcement of the partnership with Hawtai are Great Wall, which was considered the ideal Saab partner and the private Youngman Automobile Group. The Youngman Group and Saab had already signed a letter of intent to cooperate and submitted an investment proposal (as the only company to date) to the NDRC.

The situation is precarious and confusing. It is now considered relatively certain that the deal will fail. BAIC will prevent or delay the approval of the NDRC as a one-foot state enterprise. No matter what the Hawtai people think about Trolhättan and the economic condition of the facilities. Saab would be thrown back into a crisis situation.

Did Victor Muller make a mistake? Perhaps, but the pressure on Muller for months has been enormous, and the blockade of every conceivable solution in favor of Saab on the part of the EIB has made the situation more and more critical. If Hawtai pulls the emergency brake and gets off, at least 30 millions of € short-term liquidity is missing. The consequences of this are still unclear.

Text: tom / saabblog.net