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Saab turned a profit – while sales plunged almost 60 percent.
Who would have guessed? In the middle of the 2009 auto industry crisis Swedish carmaker Saab -- acquired by Dutch sports carmaker Spyker from General Motors – turned a profit of 3.9 billion kronor ($530 million) after years of persistent losses.
However, the profit was not the result of a sudden booming demand for Saab cars. Last year sales plunged almost 60 percent to 39,000 sold cars while turnover dived 61 percent to 6 billion kronor.
“2009 was not a normal year. Saab went in and out of a reconstruction phase. 75 percent of the debts were written off and we sold tools to BAIC. The annual report has limited relevance, as it does not show Saab’s global results,” the company’s head of information Eric Geers told Dagens Industri.
Without the deals with the creditors and the Chinese carmaker BAIC the firm would have made a 5.5 billion kronor loss, the newspaper said.
Rescued by a last-ditch, 400-million-euro (495-million-dollar) purchase by Dutch luxury car maker Spyker, Saab is entering an era of independence, after spending 20 years as a General Motors brand.
The company intended to produce 120,000 cars a year in 2012, returning to the production level achieved in 2007, and to sell 50,000 to 55,000 cars this year. The company expected to employ an extra 500 people towards the end of this year, taking the workforce to 4,000.
Last Updated (Wednesday, 28 July 2010 08:49)