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, October 24, 2011

Muller: Bid was totally unacceptable

Saab's Chairman and CEO Victor Muller has spoken with Swedish news agency TT and given his view on the past days of drama. Below is a translation from

Saab CEO Victor Muller and the Board of Directors at Swedish Automobile saw no alternative but to tear up the contract after what they saw as a disgraceful bid from Youngman and Pang Da.
"It was totally unacceptable. Not only because of the amount, but also because of the conditions. Everything but the return of the Messiah was on the list of conditions that would have to be met in order for them to pay. So we would never have seen any money," said Victor Muller, confirming that the offer was at around SEK 200 million. "
Victor Muller is very disappointed, accusing Chinese companies of violating the agreement which the parties agreed during two days of emergency negotiations in Stockholm two weeks ago.
According to Muller, they paid $ 10 million, about SEK 66 million, but not the remaining $ 37.5 million, about SEK 250 million. Instead, they said that they wanted to buy Saab in full.
At the same time, Swedish Automobile is bound by an exclusive agreement which says that the company can not negotiate with anyone else than Youngman and Pang Da   until 15 November. Therefore, there are still attempts to patch up relations.
"There are ongoing discussions which includes lawyers to see which solutions are available. I will personally not participate until there are conditions for a deal," said Victor Muller.
There is also a personal reason why he is not in Stockholm. When TT gets hold of him heæs on the way onto a plane.
"I will travel to Holland and my father's funeral. An accident never comes alone," he says.
Victor Muller insists that Swedish Automobile has kept all that the company promised.
"Absolutely, 100 percent. We have done what we have committed ourselves to do. To suggest otherwise would be unfair."
According to the deal from last summer Pang Da paid EUR 45 million up front for nearly 2,000 cars to be delivered in September. This has Saab not lived up to.
"How could we. We haven't manufactured any cars because they have not been there with funding. If they had paid, we would have started production long ago. But they did not pay. They do not keep their promises. We can not build any cars because we have no cash," said Victor Muller.
They want to get rid of you?
"I do not know. I do not think it's a personal thing. They do not want to deal with someone else. They want the company to themselves," he says.
Do you demand that Swedish Automobile stays as owner?
"No, I demand nothing. We have a blank sheet. This is not a Muller-decision. It is a decision of the Swedish Automobile Board. There are five people o the Board."
As usual, he talks about "that there are lots of options" and "dozens and dozen of interested investors."
He does not want to say what kind of deal he can accept.
"Any deal that gives Saab a future and that is acceptable from the standpoint of Swedish Automobile to secure Saab's future."
Can you agree to step down if you are standing in the way of a solution now?
"I am completely irrelevant to the company's future. This is not about me. It's about Saab. I have fought for this company for two years and the only thing I wish is that it survives. I'll be fine, do not worry about me . "