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.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The protection of the Saab name and the Gripen logo

Some of my readers are probably thinking that the Chinese companies Pang Da and probably especially Youngman since the company is a vehicle manufacturer, are just waiting for Saab to go bankrupt and then move in and pick up the technology and/or the brand name for pocket change.

Well, it seems it's not that easy. The use of the brand name SAAB and the Gripen logo is actually regulated by an agreement between Saab Automobile AB, the aerospace and defence company Saab AB and the commercial vehicle developer and producer Scania AB.

The aerospace and defence company Saab AB uses both the name Saab and the Gripen logo, while Scania AB only uses the Gripen logo. And as we all know, Saab Automobile AB uses both the name Saab and the Gripen logo.

According to reports in the Swedish media, the agreement between the three companies says that the brand name Saab and the Gripen logo can not be sold as a separate asset without the consent of the other parties of the agreement. The only feasible way for someone to aquire the brand name and the logo is to buy the whole Saab Automobile AB company, like Spyker Cars bought Saab from General Motors. The agreement also says that Saab Automobile AB can only develop and sell private vehicles (passenger cars) and services connected to this.

This would mean that Youngman for example, can not just buy the brand name and logo and start making Saab cars in China. And if they would buy the whole Saab Automobile company, they can not start making Saab commercial vehicles, as that would be a breach of agreement and probably upset Scania.

In other words, the best bet for Youngman and Pang Da is to make sure Saab survives the short term crisis and rely on the Chinese authorities to approve their plans to buy 53.9 per cent of Saab.