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Saab's latest Chinese owners facing their own credit woes

Sat, 16 Aug 2014

Poor Saab, it can't seem to get a break. General Motors couldn't seem to make a go of it, neither could Spyker, and now it seems that its latest owner is encountering some problems of its own.

That owner, of course, is National Electric Vehicle Sweden, a Swedish holding company owned by Chinese investors. NEVS recently restarted production at the Saab plant in Trollhättan, Sweden, and had some ambitious plans for the brand's revival, but it appears to have run out of cash.

This according to a report in The Wall Street Journal, which discovered that NEVS is having trouble paying its suppliers. One such supplier, called Labo Test, has reportedly been owed some $22,000 by NEVS since February, and without payment, petitioned the Swedish government to place NEVS into bankruptcy proceedings. If that seems a little extreme to you over twenty-two grand, it would seem the parties agree, as the petition has reportedly since been withdrawn.

That doesn't mean that NEVS is in the clear, though. In addition to Labo Test, the Swedish Enforcement Agency (which sounds to us more like the office of the inspector-general of massage therapy) has reportedly received more than 90 additional claims against NEVS.

The Journal reports that, saddled with bills it can't pay, NEVS is trying to find a major automaker with which to partner on a joint venture or potential ownership stake in Saab. Given how that went for GM, we're not sure how easy that would be.

By Noah Joseph

See also: GM SUV window switch recall urges owners to park vehicles outside, GM recalling 8.4M cars, 8.2M related to ignition problems, Mahindra eying stake in Saab owner NEVS?.