Saab news – PDRC approval and events timeline

Some news from inside Saab that I thought you’d be interested in seeing. The process so far and the processes to come.

Important bit of good news first…..


Important milestone achieved in China process

Today, the PDRC, the provincial equivalent of the National Development and Reform
Commission (NDRC) approved the deal between Saab, Pang Da and Youngman. The decision is an important step in the process of getting NDRC’s approval.

There are three levels of this authority:

  • DRC – the local authority, which has already given its approval
  • PDRC – the provincial authority, which thus gave its approval today
  • NDRC – the National Authority

We have passed two of the three levels, and will now proceed to the NDRC.


A summary of the events of recent days

  • Wednesday, September 7th Saab Automobile applied for voluntary reorganization in Vänersborg.
  • The scope of the application included Saab Automobile AB, Saab Automobile Powertrain AB and Saab Automobile Tools AB. Other units, including Saab Parts and foreign subsidiaries (including Saab Great Britian and Saab Cars North America), were excluded.
  • Thursday, September 8 it was announced in Vänersborg that the court rejected the Saab reorganisation application.
  • The same day, Saab announced its intention to appeal this decision, because it disagreed with how the court interprets the law and its application.
  • The appeal was submitted to the District Court on Monday 12 September.
  • The new documentation, among other things, included a number of improvements implemented since the first reconstruction in 2009
  • Letters from Pang Da and Youngman were included, thatclarify their commitment to Saab, and also to state that they have no reason to believe that the approval process with the Chinese authorities would not be completed or that there will be unexpected delays.
  • As part of the reorganisation application, Saab also added information about a new contract that guarantees a so-called “bridge loan” of 70 million euros, roughly equivalent to 622 million SEK.
  • Monday 12 September, two Unions filed for bankruptcy for Saab.
  • According to information, it may take at least a few weeks for the court to consider this petition, which is a separate process from Saab’s reorganisation application, which is to be decided immediately.
  • Both the leaders of the Unions have signaled that they contribute to the stay of bankruptcy if the Court of Appeal will take time to deal with reorganisation application.

What happens next?

  • District Court will now send the appeal to the Court of Appeal. It is the district court’s duty to do so promptly. They have chosen to do so by postal mail, which means that the appeal will reach the Court of Appeal on Wednesday 14 September.
  • The Court of Appeal first has to permit an appeal, that is, decide whether to reconsider the matter. It is the first time they have to consider a case of this kind and it is difficult to estimate how long it will take. It is estimated that it will take between one and a couple of days. After a decision to permit the appeal, it should be dealt with immediately in accordance with the law.
  • It is in any case, likely that Saab’s appeal to the Court of Appeal will be dealt with more quickly than the unions’ petition to the district court.

I’ve written more about this subject, below.

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    1. And it’s great to hear this:
      “We have passed two of the three levels, and will now proceed to the NDRC.”

  1. Dear Steven! It is incredible how much meaningful efforts you put in making the situation distinctive. Monitoring not only the blog, but also the various media for their interpretation of the matter, I could only dream those guys trim their skepticism down and at least refer to solid facts, rather than spread their panic around…

    1. Nothing sells papers like a dramatic bad news headline, Philip.  We just keep working away, regardless of what they write about us.  Hopefully people will get the good news as well.

  2. Last week the press picked up comments from China that said that Youngman never will get OK from PDRC and that they will pull out from the deal. Good that they where wrong! That’s how much you can belive in the press!

      1. I REALLY want one! Desperately so however I am starting to doubt SAAB’s ability to pull themselves out of this mess… How and when are they likely to re-start production?

          1. Good news indeed. According to Frédéric Cho, China expert at Handelsbanken, the fact that PDRC has given the deal thumbs up strongly indicates that the NDRC will do the same. I am more nervous about the Swedish court decision right now. I just want Saab to get going again so that I can prepare to buy the 9-5 SportCombi…

        1. People said that Saab was dead & buried also in 2009/2010 when the original Spyker bid was rejected. But they came through after all.
          Saab needs to learn how to walk again, which is not easy when people are screaming and pulling at them.

          “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t
          walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”

    1. There are dealers in the USA that have SAAB cars on their lots if your in Ohio I know of plenty of cars to be sold , and they have incentives that do lower the price as much as 5 to 7 K dollars US , I’m looking to buy a 9-3 combi but tho’s are a lil harder to find . I’d buy one  =)

      1. I am in England and it is a company car so it will have to built from scratch. Really do not want to end up with BMW or Audi. SAAB is diferrent and very individual…

        1. I am also in England. I got my 9-5 Vector saloon exactly one week ago – thanks to SAAB GB and Humberside Motors in Grimsby. Don`t give up hope. This is my first SAAB since I sold my old 99 more than 25 years ago. This 9-5 is a brilliant car and well worth the four month wait, Long live SAAB!

          1. WOW! I am really glad to hear that you have finally received your SAAB. I don’t think that I will be cancelling my order now. Need to wait for SAAB to start production again… My car will be built to my spec with many additional options and therefore it can’t be sourced from a dealership. I cannot wait to drive this car! Will be watching news every day. Fingers crossed for SAAB!

    2. xsenia,

      Depends on what you want.  We can’t guarantee a build date at this point, but I’m quietly confident that we’ll be building cars again.  Of course, I’d urge you to hold on.  The Griffin (assuming that’s what you’ve ordered) is the best 9-3 we’ve ever put to market.

      1. Steven,

        I am extremely grateful for giving me hope again. Glad to hear that I may get my long-awaited car after all!

    3. In Taiwan we do have the new Griffin 9-3. Everything is pretty good. They upgrade a new engine as same as the new 9-5. You have to wait for it.

    4. If you even can cancel it. (Which ofcourse you should never do 🙂
      I’ve heard that people here in Belgium who have ordered a new Saab can’t cancel it until the Stop/Continue decision is taken.
      At the moment Saab is in neither of both situations but seems to be “Pauzed”.
      Indeed, not running. But not dead yet either !

  3. Good …. I am travelling for business but it is always a pleasure reading these good news … now I want to see how the appeal court could possibly reject the reorganisation … thanks for the work Swade.

    Griffin Up !!!

  4. Saab will be forced into bankruptcy on 26th of September if the Court of Appeal says no… 🙁 1 month is too long! Hope that i don’t need to R.I.P about Saab…

    1. If the court says Yes, which I’m quite confident they will, then unions will withdraw their demand and the 26th of September will be just another day with nothing to note whatsoever.  Fill that glass a little, Daniel.

      1. Then i will have my fingers crossed for that 🙂 The champagne bottle will be opened when Saab will be saved!

        Would be very hard for me to see Saab dissepear, almost 20 years since my birthday we did only drive Saabs… And we will continue with that if they will exist!

        See you at the Oktoberfest festival on the 1st of October 🙂

  5. My current 9-5 almost has 300.000kms (185.000 miles) and I really would like a new 9-5.
    Whereas my current 9-5 is neat & efficient, the new 9-5 is just dazzling. I truly hope Saab will remain.

    A word to the unions:
    I fully understand it is no fun to go without pay and requesting bankruptcy is a method of forcing the very needed payments of staff.
    If this bankruptcy goes through you will get paid.
    But look a bit further down the road: at the same time you’d be out of a job.

    I’m an engineer and not a beancounter, but my opinion is that it’s better to have a job and miss a few payments than to have no job at all.

    I fully agree that actions must be taken to protect the workforce.
    But don’t throw away the old bucket before you know whether the new one holds water (if you even have a new one).

    1. Dont eat the goose that lays the golden egg ,just an opinion , I’ve gone for months without pay and did fine , Sweden will pay you , whats been going on for the months that no production has been going on , you were payed yeah we need a check but at what cost down the road . but I’m just a man who works everyday it’s the reason I’m going to continue to work , I work because  I must , Rant over , I do support my employed people but I’m not in your shoes

  6. I don’t mean to sound like a pig-head but what “WORK ” do the unions think their workers should be paid for? They have not done work ?

     If I don’t go to work for months even if its my bosses fault , UH I don’t get paid, maybe unemployment , which my boss already took from my check when he was paying me, but I have no right to go after my boss unless he made promises. I love my SAAB Madly its the only car that I have had with close to zero problems. The workers make a good product. 

    When you make the New 9-3 I will be first inline… Oh and sorry I wont trade my 9-3ssc in, I love it to much…

  7. Well, for what it’s worth, i’ll add my 2 cents here (maybe just slightly off topic, but what the hell).
    Steven, I have the deepest admiration for the way you manage to keep calm and post enlighting and enlighted comments here. I have no doubt that deep inside, your feelings are not quite as calm and posed as they are in writing. From what i’ve heard and read, you’ve put both your professional and personal life on the line for SAAB. It probably now turns out as both the best and worse decision you ever made, a dream come true and a nightmare come reality at the same time.
    I’m sure also that this state of mind of yours reflects that of a lot of your co-workers back in Trolhattan : managing to show calm and rationale, despite hectic and totally irrational times. But then again, that is the stuff true proffessionals are made of.
    I am truly deeply convinced that SAAB will make it through this episode and will (maybe not so) soon produce cars again. Weither that “new” “new” SAAB will be successfull is another thing, but i have no doubt it will get a chance to have a crack at it. Sure, the image of SAAB has suffered a lot in this process, but as a european, I am convinced that the brand damage in other parts of the world is nowhere near as bad as it is here (US excepted). So maybe it does stand a chance of success after this whole episode.
    In the past years I have started to love a brand that I had no affinity with before, it has just grown on me at (turbo) speed. That is probably the only single thing that hasn’t changed in the last two years, the ability of the brand to totally grow on you. SAAB is probably not the only brand to have this affect on people, but it is a rare and very, very valuable asset – for those who care to recognize it. But so far, only very few actually do. That will be the challenge ahead…..
    Anyway, keep hanging in there, all of you back in Trolhattan, things will, eventually, be all right.

    1. I give you credit Mr. Wade in keeping calm.. Like aviation as a pilot you must remain calm even when things seem bad. You wont get anywhere being a drama queen or losing you cool. You must stay on track and look at what can be done to make things better, thats it . – You are not over optimistic. You are doing your job! 

  8. If Saab get’s through all this, you deserve the Public Relations’ award of the decade if not century. Actually, either way it turns out Saab deserves it. It will be used as a case study. Amazing job.  That aside, if Saab doesn’t come through, what the hell am I going to drive? There’s no other brand that fits!

  9. There’s too much at stake for anyone to give up on Saab.  They are worth saving—-for the jobs, the cars, the history.  As I’ve written previously, the best cars they’ve ever made are the models offered in 2011 (new 9-4 and 9-5).  They have a couple others in the pipeline, very close to production, that will further broaden the line—-some really exciting stuff planned.  This is not the time to quit—-it’s the time for Saab to look for any angle to survive.  I really believe the marriage between Saab and viable Chinese car companies will be historic, particularly when models developed in China are exported to the U.S., presumably at more affordable prices than the competition. 

  10. I recently cancelled my order for a new Saab 9-5 due to… well frustration. The dealer then sold me (ouch… wait for it) an Opel Insignia. Signing the order for the Rüsselheim wheels this morning the dealer mentioned that Saab has now cancelled all of its existing orders as they can no longer estimate when production will resume. I wonder if this really is the case.