IMPORTANT NEWS: National Electric Vehicle Sweden has agreed to buy the assets of Saab Automobile and the sale is expected to be finalized during the summer.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Another stop at Saab on Wednesday - new payment system to blame?

Update II: Victor Muller talks to Swedish TV news Rapport (40 sec in).
Update I: Saab says the payment system is to blame for late payments:

Saab: The payment system has lead to difficulties
After Saab was seperated from General Motors, Saab Automobile has introduced a new payment system. However, it has not worked as intended and, therefore, suppliers had to wait for their money. This according to press spokesman Thomas Schulz.

- We have introduced a new payment system which has been difficult to get to work, says Thomas Schulz, spokesman for Saab Automobile, after the suppliers had to wait for their money.

- It has lead to delays in payment. We can admit to that. We are in dialogue with all suppliers to avoid disruptions in production as much as possible.

Do the suppliers understand your problems?

- Since we have so many suppliers so it is difficult to get the message out to all. I think they understand us, but ultimately they need money to survive just like us. I understand they are frustrated that we could not get the system to work correctly, says Thomas Schulz.

What are you doing to resolve the situation?

- We have put in extra resources, both in the purchasing and supplier dialogue and of course to resolve the system problems.

Thomas Schulz would not comment on production disruptions on Wednesday, but said that Saab Automobile and transportation company DB Schenker, which stopped their supplies, have a dialogue going.

- The hope is that Schenker will be up and running again soon, says Thomas Schulz

 According to the production stopped at Saab again on Wednesday:
Saab is once again at a standstill
According to information the production has stopped again at Saab Automobile. Production had to stop just before 11 pm, and the reason was once again shortage of materials.
In addition to DB Schenker, IAC in Färgelanda as also affected.
Saab spokesman Thomas Schulz would not comment on the production stop.
- I can not comment, but I can say that we have been in contact with all suppliers and told them that they must do everything they can to deliver materials, he says.
He also confirmed that many suppliers are affected.
- All suppliers are affected and it has to do with our new payment system which unfortunately has been a problem.
And it is not only Schenker DB that Saab has a problem paying - from several sources we are told that IAC in Färgelanda has been affected by unpaid deliveries, and that they have reduced or even stopped their production for Saab.

Svenska dagladet has talked to Eric Geers at Saab who says that Saab has no cash flow problem:

Do you have cash flow problems?
- No, but we negotiate the delivery and payment conditions with a handful of suppliers. When you use just-in-time deliveries like we do, sometimes this can happen. Now we have reached an agreement with Schenker on payments and deliveries but I can not go into details on the negotiations, he says.

The supply disruptions is not said to be connected to shortage of money.

 - It is not our liquidity that is the problem, says head of information Eric Geers.

 He would not comment on if all suppliers have been paid on time or not.

 - We are in the midst of discussions on the payment and delivery terms and we do not discuss through the media, he says.