Hours before facing court action to liquidate, Saab has been saved by Chinese automakers, Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile and Pang Da Automobile Trade, in an agreement to buy the company for a little over $140 million. The Swedish automaker has been struggling to survive since January 2010 when General Motors sold the automobile division to Spyker cars. In April 2011, the company continued to struggle as factories closed due to lack of credit. At the time, the tentative agreement with China’s Pang Da Automobile Trade allowed the factories to reopen, giving the Chinese company an equity stake in Spyker.
The Chinese companies are expected to invest up to $708 million in Saab, and plan to build vehicles at their Trollhattan plant as well as in China, which will become the second home market for Saab. The deal first requires the approval of the authorities in Beijing, the European Investment Bank, the Swedish government, as well as G.M., which has links to Saab, through intellectual property and preferred shares.