GM unit Saab files for protection from creditors
By KARL RITTER
The Associated Press
Friday, February 20, 2009; 9:11 AM
STOCKHOLM — General Motors Corp.’s Swedish-based subsidiary Saab went into bankruptcy protection Friday so the unit can be spun off or sold by its struggling U.S. parent, officials said.
The move comes after Sweden turned down GM’s request for government help for Saab.
An application to reorganize the brand was filed at a district court in Vanersborg, in southwestern Sweden, Saab spokeswoman Margareta Hogstrom said. It was approved later Friday.
The Swedish government on Wednesday rejected a request from loss-making GM to inject money into the carmaker. GM, which is seeking help from the U.S. government to avoid bankruptcy at home, has been looking for buyers for Saab but said it needs more funding to spin off or sell the division.
“We explored and will continue to explore all available options for funding and/or selling Saab and it was determined a formal restructuring would be the best way to create a truly independent entity that is ready for investment,”
Saab’s managing director, Jan Ake Jonsson, said in a statement.
The move would give Saab protection from creditors while it restructures in a process similar to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S.
There’s not a better and more successful marketer in the world that IKEA and Sweden ought to have its national car back–the nation can’t roll down the highway on Volvo alone. I’ve owned both a Saab (900 turbo) and Volvo (740 sedan). It’s no contest. The Saab was and is one great car. How it ever came to GM is a mystery that threatens to become a murder-mystery.
Saab and the IKEA meatballs–two great Swedish institutions.