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Saab hoping to do more Chinese deals


Saab hoping to do more Chinese deals


The latest episode in the Saab saga has Dutch owner Spyker planning to sell even more of the company to the Chinese.

Once it gets approval from regulators, Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Company will buy a 29.9 percent stake in the Swedish carmaker.

That is on top of the 24 percent it is selling to Chinese car distributor Pangda.

The sale would raise a total of 245 million euros. But it is by no means a done deal.

It hinges on approval from governmental agencies and third parties, which would likely involve gaining Chinese and Swedish government approval and a green light from the European Investment Bank and Saab shareholder General Motors.

Gaining Chinese clearance could prove especially difficult as Beijing follows a strict and price-sensitive policy when it comes to outbound acquisitions, an approvals process that has scuttled previous deals in the car industry.

Spyker Cars chief executive Victor Muller told Swedish news agency TT the approval process for the new agreement should take two to three months.

Production at Saab was shut down for most of April and May after it was unable to pay its suppliers and only got output going again on May 27 after a deal with Pangda to buy more than 1,900 cars for 45 million euros.

But the company has been forced to halt production again this week as it looks to reach a deal with remaining suppliers and as it negotiates more funds.

A Swedish paper earlier reported on Monday that Saab will this week announce that it is selling close its factory buildings and will lease them back, providing the firm with about 280 million Swedish crowns (30.7 million euros) in cash.

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