81 days

80 days were enough for Jules Verne, who sent his hero Phileas Fogg around the world. One more day, 81 days, is the time frame NEVS was given yesterday.

The end of the dream
The end of the dream

The package consists of 21 days - during which the haircut becomes legally binding - and 60 days until 50% of the claims are to be serviced. Then between € 16 and 17 million must flow to the creditors. Money that has not yet been in the NEVS cash register. There are conditions that ensure that everything runs as it is in the interests of the creditors in the coming weeks. The representatives of the state praised the company yesterday in court as reliable and at the same time put the previous administrator aside to ensure that it stays that way.

81 days could be enough if negotiations are well advanced and there are only subtleties to settle to complete an international deal. You are too short if you are stuck in an embryonic stage.

NEVS can be compared to a little man who has bought himself a nice, new suit. Now he realizes that he bought a few sizes too big and no matter how he fidgets, he cannot fill in the suit. Contract manufacturing, external development, the production of spare parts. These are all marginal notes that are not enough to fill the huge Saab factory area and run sustainable business. NEVS fidgets, trapped in a suit that is far too big.

Even if NEVS promised to invest billions of dollars (SEK) yesterday through potential loans from a state-owned bank in China and a development partnership, these are only small parts in a larger puzzle. Maybe state, Chinese money comes to Trollhättan. Because of political reasons.

Maybe NEVS will realize the development partnership. It is based on a pilot project based on the Phoenix platform. A hope for hope, with the option of later development of series vehicles. Not more. Contracts with the new partner have not yet been signed, but should be in April. Says NEVS. You don't mention a name behind it.

These are side-scenes, if you do not want to lose sight of the big picture. The company in Stallbacka will only be stable and sustainable through a radical cure.

That got through in court yesterday when managing director Bergman announced that a change of ownership will only take place if the problem with the trademark rights has been successfully resolved. Which is where we are.

The true core of the NEVS mission is Saab. Only then will money in the coffers, only so can complete the adventure with a profit. Without the Saab trademark rights nothing will come to the happy final. There will be no new, strong major shareholder who could re-form a living organism out of the plant. The key to survival is not banks from China, not development partnerships. It is located at the Saab AB. That's the bitter truth for Bergman and Kai Johan Jiang.

Will NEVS survive, is that good for the Saab brand? A question that readers keep asking. I find it difficult to develop sympathy for NEVS. I don't see a workable story, nor do I see any reasons why one could be successful in the long term. There will only be a continuation of the Saab story if the brand name returns to Trollhättan. It only comes home when the structures at NEVS change completely.

81 days is not much time in that way. You are the countdown that is on. The deadline in which NEVS must deliver. Signatures, partners, money. That is the result of yesterday.

33 thoughts on "81 days"

  • Yet another lesson can be drawn from both cases - Antonov and NEVS. As tempting as the large foreign exchange reserves of Chinese and (still) Russian investors are, one should be careful with the bureaucracy and arbitrariness of the judiciary in the countries of origin. If I have to fear that investments will be canceled at the whim of the administrations in place, and that legal investigations and bans will be imposed on accounts, then the most beautiful capital is of no use.

  • Where the stupid thing is that in both cases actually no real failure of the actor is present. In the case Antonov has later clarified that the charges against him were not true, and he could have saved Saab as a blameless investor. and in the other case there is nothing to say against the commitment to electromobility, especially in the bad-air cities of China. And calamities happen without guilt and scapegoats are needed.

  • Beyond all Benz or suit comparisons, you've hit the nail on the head. And it is precisely the investment sums in the automotive industry that are apparently often underestimated - bad planning can quickly devour billions. Even the most potent investor will frown. For a plan B, capital is usually scarce - and for a plan C it is no longer available.

  • As Dauerpesimist I say it again and again. That will not work with our brand anymore! The Saabs who are at home and maintain
    (and drive!) Thats it!

  • Whatever! The hope is dwindling and I stick to my opinion, Saab comeback please without NEVS.

  • You must not forget that Saab AB and Scania have made joint decisions on the brand name into the VM time. Only with NEVS Scania (with the griffin) was no longer on board, the Saab AB has given the name in his own responsibility.

  • The rumor is in principle correct, there was a Chinese blogger who dealt intensively with the delicate operations around environment of KJJ. He provided me with his documents in the spring 2014, but I have decided against a publication and still do today. On the one hand, because the processes are not to be checked for me, on the other hand because the publication could not have manageable consequences for all those involved.

  • Well, the general lesson from this can be that, as an investor, you shouldn't be calculating on edge, and that there should also be a plan C in addition to a plan B.

    Muller had a plan B, that in case of delays Antonov (?) Should step in, with bridging funds. When it was blocked, there was no further operational plan C.

    And at NEVS, it seems to be so (rumor) that after a major accident in a Chinese factory, an investigation took place, with heads rolling, including that of the Chinese promoter of the project, a head animal in the provincial administration. Then, on the Chinese side, any commitment to e-cars died, and NEVS had no plan B, and also quickly no more money.

    Both owners then showed damage-limiting habits for their own pocket, but Muller's commitment to continuing operations at Saab is significantly greater.

  • As Tom already wrote, without a name NEVS is next to nothing and they know that too. The denial of SAAB AB was not without reason.
    I assume that NEVS pretended to be a suitable contact person and wanted to broker the naming rights itself ...

    And that one negotiated primarily with NEVS, instead of a crumbled automobile brand together with the various contact persons.

    If, in the course of negotiations, it turns out that NEVS does not have half of all the threads in hand and only blows hot air into the meetings, then those are over. So it was meant.

  • If there is real interest (Mahindra?), SAAB AB would certainly not mind if this interested party contacts it directly because of the use of the name (why somersault backwards?) - especially since business relationships SAAB AB + Mahindra have already existed.

    I go, as mentioned, but rather assume that at the SAAB AB again no instinct is present and this time too lofty specifications were made (which would probably not even the SAAB AB itself with automotive sector retrospectively attacked).

    SAAB AB has so far not distinguished itself as a smart decision-maker when it comes to trademark rights - let's see if it might still succeed in making a balanced decision.

  • We don't know “For an apple and an egg” - in any case it was always the wrong choice.

  • That's right.

    I was referring to the article and Tom's assessment that NEVS needs and / or relies on the name. I think there is a lot to it ...

    The statements of SAAB AB and a highly-traded potential investor, which made it clear that there was no negotiation on naming rights or that had ended by joining NEVS, could be related.

    It is quite possible that NEVS was playing poker without having SAAB AB on board. By pretending false facts, every potential investor instantly makes a somersault backwards from the negotiating table.

  • Maybe I became something extravagant in coloring (even without alcohol in the handle when writing).

    The point I wanted to illustrate is this. NEVS did not buy into a company that was too big for them (something like that can work, Sanofi got the more than double the Aventis in terms of turnover and staff), but simply too expensive for them. With outside investments, you might have had some buffer to survive on low income, but without them, your own rather meager business model was not enough to pay the running costs.

  • Partly I have to vote there, because one must not forget that also the SAAB AB has made a chain of wrong decisions and has always issued the trademark rights for n Appel and n Ei. That might have spared us this thriller.

  • However, the question of the decision on trademark rights is, in my view, whether SAAB AB really has the ability to master this task.

    In the past, SAAB AB has never covered itself with fame in terms of the automotive sector - at the beginning of the doldrums in this sector, they wanted to part with it as quickly as possible and then did not come to an agreement with Ford (but might have been positive with Ford). Then GM came into play. As is well known, a total mistake - as was the passing on of the trademark rights to Spyker.

    What happened after that, we also know.

    With SAAB AB, I have so far lacked the necessary instinct to make a balanced decision with positive results. Too high requirements (Mahindra?) Also speak against a good decision-making ability of the SAAB AB - as mentioned, I am rather skeptical in this regard.


    ... or not? As for the fate of NEVS, we can all sit back and relax. NEVS is just not SAAB!

    The SAAB AB has the naming rights and will only give this name to someone who offers their automobiles, which could fulfill a desired image.

    That may happen or not.

  • I really liked Tom's suit analogy ...

    Where is the added value of the Benz analogy? And to what extent is it more incisive to digress to nutrition and living?

  • Probably a bigger crack in the ball - then they won't work properly anymore!

  • In spite of everything, we continue to enjoy our SAAB vehicles. Nobody can take that from us.
    Thank you Tom for your super reports and your Optimums and confidence for this great car brand.
    Best regards

  • I'm sorry, but you can not read much of it anymore. I do not know how it works either. Hope dies last and our cars, which we have are so great that it just has to go on.
    If not then there is still time to moan.
    Tom keeps us up to date as always.
    Thank you.

  • Oops, just in line with the article while cleaning up, finally found my glass ball: Hmmm, it's over in 81 days. Final. No money, no investor, no Indian, no Chinese. In three years, Borgward from Stuttgart will take over the production facilities in order to be able to satisfy the meanwhile booming demand for their new innovative models….

  • Wishful thinking “The Saab Festival is a week beforehand and Saab has often presented new models. I would be more than satisfied with new owners ”

  • ... well Sweden is clear and when KJJ is traveling in China and comes from there. ... wait, we can't change it!

  • In 80 days we know if NEVS are dream dancers, or if there really is something behind the announcements. We have been waiting so long, there are no more 80 days.
    During this time a hobby-and-fair weather SAAB (9000 CSE 96 or 97) is purchased, which bypasses the time

  • You will see what happens. From 14.04, the next important date, NEVS can leave the reconstruction. Possible buyers / partners / investors have an easier start. India may then show its flag.

  • Why Sweden and China?

    Was not there another group in India that wanted to have a well-known car brand in their portfolio?

  • Dear Tom, why such a complicated comparison with the suit? NEVS reminds me of someone who bought a Benz on credit, and now realizes that in addition to the installments, gasoline, insurance, maintenance and repairs have to be paid for - and the driver can neither live in the car nor do without food . Everything is difficult to finance if nobody gives you money (investor) and your own job doesn't yield enough (production of the 9-3 small series).

    I also believe that NEVS has simply set itself a much too ambitious time frame - how long the revival of a brand can take, as you recently saw in the Borgward case (also in your article here). 10 years purely for planning and financing - and then no factory had been built, no car produced, in other words just money spent.

  • Now it's getting really serious, after the situation has actually been very serious for a long time….
    There will not be another extension, if not now, then never!

  • Yes, let's see what happens until June 12.06.2015th, 163 (day 2015 in XNUMX) ... it remains exciting. There was already plenty of hot air.
    THANKS Tom, for the factual article !!!

  • ... well then we stay behind the fence and see what is happening in Sweden and China!

  • Excellent comment.

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