Could Saab Be Bankrupt Within 5 Days? Antonov Thinks So

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Vladimiar Antonov, the Russian banker and businessman whose involvement in Spyker caused a delay in the sale of Saab from GM while investigations into rumored mafia ties were held, has said in an interview with Sweden's Dagens Industri that Saab could be bankrupt in as little as five days.

Antonov also pronounced gloomy sales projections: 60,000-65,000 total cars will be sold this year, he thinks. That's well short of the 80,000-car goal the company has set itself.

Despite the rough financial situation, the Russian backer says he has a half-billion Swedish Kronors (about $80 million) to put into the brand, which should be enough to keep it rolling this year, but Antonov says other investors are needed as well. Without an additional government loan or private funds, the company could go bankrupt within five days, he says.

While all of this goes on in the background, Saab is putting forward a brave face: just last week it unveiled a range of updated and new models, spoke boldly of its plans for the future, and showed off a flashy concept penned by new chief designer Jason Castriota.

[Dagens Industri via]
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Comments (8)
  1. That sucks for Saab, but why should government loans be taken out to keep it running? If car companies cant survive on their own, why is the governments expected to save them? Besides Government Motors already owns Saab. Give it to the Russian and let him take care of it.

  2. Daniel,
    Are you serious? "Government Motors" is that what GM stands for now? GM(General Motors) does NOT own Saab, and hasn't for over a year now. Although I agree government bailouts are not the answer.

  3. Putting out such a pathetic concept like this PhoeniX concept doesn't help either.

  4. @gazzed, why do you say the PhoeniX is "pathetic"? The concept rode on a brand new platform, with an intelligent hybrid all-wheel drive system, sophisticated telematics and connectivity and an aggressive look. The styling is not my favorite but it's far from bad.
    C'mon, I'm no Saab fan but the PhoeniX is an amazing piece of engineering from a 'broke' company.

  5. Sounds a lot like he has an axe to grind... after all, the more he can talk down the share price, the less he will have to pay.

  6. well- the "handout" has worked for GM and kept a lot of people employed at a time when actions by the government (ie Congress) and Wall Street have gutted a lot of peoples' lives. And while GM management was it's own pathetic worst enemy, it seems to be well on it's way to health today. Libertarianism has an appeal for some, but I am not sure I would want to live downstream of a died in the wool libertarian. All is to say that black & white solutions are rarely correct. I wish we could get back to actually considering consequences in this country, rather than just pushing our own agenda.
    Cool how you can use any forum to make a point, huh! Don't bother flaming. I won't see it.

  7. Really old news. Anatov's comments were taken out of contents by the Swedish press. Saab has a funded business plan for the next four years, at which point the oldest car in the line-up will be the just-released 9-5 sedan. This might be a worry for Saab in a few years, but it's not the case right now. And besides, it's not even halfway through March – why is anyone worried about not meeting year-end sales projections? Calm down, everyone.

  8. Antonov playes a tough game to get to invest in Saab. The EIB requires tight background checks for owner changes while loaning money. Antonov wants to get things moving. There is no risk Saab will go bankrupt (no more than other carmakers). When Antonov finally gets to by into Saab we'll se even more investments and developments of new models - 92 etc.

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