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.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Saab switched to Hawtai in the last minute

Svenska Dagbladet reveals that Saab switched from their original preferred bidder and started to negotiate with Hawtai just a few days before the partnership was presented. The newspaper do not say who the partner Saab switched from was. It was Invest Sweden who constructed the deal with Hawtai. (Invest Sweden is the official investment promotion agency of Sweden and is placed under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.)

Per-Erik Sandlund who is CEO of Invest Sweden says the following to Dagens industri:
- Hawtai entered into the process late, just at the end and the whole deal was done in three or four days.

He continues saying that as negotiations with Hawtai only lasted a few days before it was presented, there is still much work left before a formal and complete agreement is ready.

I guess this means two things. First that Hawtai came with an offer that Saab couldn't refuse. Secondly, that both Saab and Hawtai so far do not fully grasp what they have gotten into. Anyway, theses are exciting times!

PS: You may have read elsewhere yesterday that the Swedish Ambassador to China has written a very critical report about Hawtai where he amongst other things raises doubts about the number of cars Hawtai claims to have sold in 2010. The Ambassador claims that the sales figure is much lower. But now the CEO of Invest Sweden, Per-Erik Sandlund, questions the Ambassador's sales figure and when Dagens Industri asked the Ambassador where he got his sales figure from, the Ambassador admitted that it was a wild guess and he also said that he didn't know anything about Hawtai before the deal was announced. Sweden, maybe it's time for you to call your Ambassador home?