Saab, the Swedish automaker that is owned by the Netherlands-based company Swedish Automobile, announced today that it would be continuing the work-stop at its factory in Trollhattan for another two weeks.
The factory, which is in southern Sweden, has already been idle for most of April and May because it was unable to pay its suppliers. Production began again in late May but had to halt again fairly quickly for the same reason.
Saab's spokesperson, Gunilla Gustavs told the press this morning that, "There will be no normal production during weeks 25 and 26 [June 20 - July 3]."
Swedish Automobile, the company formerly known as Spyker, announced eleven days ago that production on Saab-branded vehicles would be stopped until agreements could be secured with all of the floundering company's suppliers.
Speaking to that point, Gustav's said that the carmaker was, "...still negotiating with all suppliers and we need to get everyone on board at the same time." She added that, "The weeks of 27-29 [July 4-24] are planned to be normal working weeks."
Over the past few weeks, Saab has received the offer of a rescue package from two auto companies in China, Pangda and Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co., which, if approved by the European and Chinese authorities, will solve the mid- and long-term financing issues being experienced by the Swedish car manufacturer. Short-term financing, however, is still a serious problem, and the company is hoping that a quick sale of its factory will supply the cash infusion needed to resume production.
Earlier today, the Swedish business newspaper Dagens Industri said that talks had been held over the weekend about the prospect of a sale and leaseback deal on the Trollhatten plant and property with the property company Hemfosa. According to the paper, Hemfosa was willing to pay roughly $46 million (300 million Swedish crowns) for the Saab properties.
When asked about the plans for the building sale, Gustavs said, "There is nothing new that we can communicate. That is still being negotiated."