Ongoing financial problems at Saab will not dent Coventry-based CPP Global Holdings’ ambitions to acquire the Spyker supercar marque - even though the deal has currently stalled.
Last week CPP announced it was buying the former Jaguar Browns Lane plant in Coventry, with a view to consolidating its five operations in the city onto one site in a move set to create hundreds of jobs.
Saab’s Dutch parent company Swedish Automobile announced this week it is to seek creditor protection at a Swedish court so it can reorganise its Saab operations and seek new funding.
Swedish Automobile came into existence when Spyker Cars bought Saab from General Motors in 2010 and since then the company has been seeking to offload the Spyker brand.
The creditor protection move will see the appointment of an administrator who will work with management to reorganise Saab.
Share trade in Swedish Automobile has been suspended but the company says it is confident creditors will support its reorganisation plan.
The company recently reported a second quarter loss of £133 million compared with a loss of £52 million in the same period last year.
Production has also ground to a standstill at Saab’s Trollhattan-based plant in Sweden as it has struggled to pay both suppliers and staff.
However, as CPP unveiled its expansion plans it said it hopes the deal is still ‘very much on’, with Spyker being seen as an integral part of its future.
Jon Chester CPP’s product and brand director said: “We signed a memorandum of understanding that has now lapsed but we are still very much committed to the purchase and would very much like to carry on.”
The memorandum of understanding lapsed on June 24 and since then Swedish Automobile’s troubles have deepened.
Meanwhile CPP, which already produces the aluminium chassis and bodywork for the Spyker C8 Aileron supercar, said it was continuing to look to the future, with full-scale Spyker production central to its long-term plans.
“We have invested heavily in facilities, machinery, people and space,” Mr Chester added.
“We could build Spyker cars very very quickly. There are some things which are out of our control but we are very much committed to making it happen. Spyker remains a great fit in our portfolio.
“We are doing absolutely everything we can but have to be patient.”
CPP also owns and manufacturers the Bowler off-road racing brand and Mr Chester said the company had additional vehicle manufacturing plans in development.
He added that even a worst case scenario where the Spyker deal fell through would not dampen growth plans.
“We are very happy it will happen but if it didn’t we still have plenty to keep us busy,” he said.
Mr Chester praised Coventry City Council and the Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership for their help. CPP will now submit a planning application with the hope construction work can begin in spring 2012.
“Browns Lane is a perfect site for us and makes absolute sense,” Mr Chester added. “To find somewhere so perfect in Coventry is fantastic.”