Judicial dates are the time of settlement. The opportunity to find answers to open questions. In Vänersborg there will be a lot of open questions starting in January. The last months of Saab Automobile AB are being worked up. Chief Prosecutor Sahlgren brings via DN in advance heavy artillery in position.
4,8 billion € loss over the years 1990 to 2010. That sounds like a lot of money and it is. A headline that is very striking. It sounds at Saab after a company that would never have had the chance of profitability as a hopeless case. But it is not even half the truth.
Saab financed the flops of GM
During GM time, costs were happily socialized in the high-tax country of Sweden. The Cadillac BLS project is a good example of this. The development of the flop paid Saab. Income, however, flowed into US funds. The development costs for other brands in the group, the construction of prototypes - that was booked to Trollhättan. How to successfully save taxes. In 18 of 20 GM years, profits with Saab losses could be expected small.
But the real big drama is the Spyker years. There are unanswered questions here, and most of all they will have to answer Jan Åke Jonsson. Since joining 1973 in various positions at GM, he knew the situation at Saab long before he was appointed CEO. He missed some bitter pills on behalf of GM before his years in Trollhättan, his relationship with Saab was not always relaxed.
Jonsson, an experienced, competent manager, stayed on board when Spyker took over. A buyer, without any financial backup, rushes to a brand with high capital requirements. And he stayed on board after the 1. March. The black day, when GM finally pulled the plug at Saab. No more deliveries without cash, that was the end. Because the allegedly independent Saab Automobile AB was still in complete dependence of the Americans.
Saab in dependence on GM.
The production control in the factory - a license from GM. Saab 9-5 and 9-4x, licensed by GM. Finished products automatically became the property of the GM financial subsidiary. The distribution network depending on GM; Efforts to become independent have stalled at an early stage. A person would have been assumed in this situation bogus self-employment.
The 1. March 2011 was the date of death of Saab. GM had the mark after two previous reconstructions so for the third time and especially finally taken out of the world. The question is why? Why now? 220 million Swedish kroner (23 million €) of liabilities can not have been the reason. What Saab produced went automatically to GM through a blanket assignment. The claims were covered, the least risk was in Detroit.
But for Saab the decision was deadly. The dependence on services from the GM / Opel environment was completed by the long affiliation to the group. It was like suddenly turning off the power. Nevertheless, Jonsson stayed until the 19. May 2011 as Saab CEO in office. He, the veteran GM manager, must have known that Saab would not even have a chance in the medium term without a potent partner. That there would be no next month without GM in the background, no next week, no tomorrow.
2010 and 2011 had a rumor that Muller Saab should only have passed through to GM Partner BAIC. With a premium as a commission, of course. The rumor lasted a long time. Jan Åke Jonsson could have played Detroit's guardian on Muller's side.
That's the only explanation that makes sense to me. In January, questions will be asked in Vänersborg. Jonsson's answers are particularly curious.