GM and Spyker reach Saab agreement

General Motors (GM) and Spyker Cars have confirmed they have reached an agreement on the purchase of Saab Automobile for a total of $74m (£46m).

As part of the agreement, Spyker Cars intends to form a new company, called Saab Spyker Automobiles, to carry the Saab brand forward.

According to Spyker Cars, the purchase price will be paid in two instalments. The first instalment of $50m will be paid when the transaction closes, which is expected on or before 15 February 2010. The second instalment of $24m will be paid on 15 July 2010.

The share-purchase agreement is expected to go through following the approval by the Swedish government of a €400m (£350m) loan agreement between Saab and the European Investment Bank. Spyker’s shareholders are expected to restructure at the close of the deal.

Once the deal is complete, GM will retain redeemable preference shares of $326m, which represent less than one per cent of the voting rights in the capital of Saab.

‘Throughout the negotiations, GM has always had the hope to find a solution for Saab that would avoid a wind-down of the brand,’ said Nick Reilly, president of GM Europe. ‘We’ve worked with many parties over the past year, including governments and investors, and I’m very pleased that we could come to such a good conclusion – one that preserves jobs in Sweden and elsewhere. GM will continue to support Saab and Spyker on their way forward.’