General Motors Corp. said on
Monday it intends to exercise the option to buy the remaining 50
percent of Saab Automobile AB from Investor AB, the Swedish
industrial holding company, with which the GM group has shared
ownership for the last decade.
GM, the world's largest auto maker, said it will take full
ownership of Saab by the end of January. Terms of the deal were
"Over our 10 years with Saab we've seen increasing market
success and expansion of the Saab brand internationally," said
GM President and Chief Operating Officer G. Richard Wagoner Jr.
"This logical next step of exercising our option to take
full ownership will be to move ahead even faster in developing
new innovative Saab products, contributing even more to a
globally diverse portfolio of resources, expertise and
products," he said in a statement.
Saab Automobile AB became a 50-50 joint venture on March 15,
1990, with the GM group holding half of the shares, and
Saab-Scania AB owning the other half. Saab-Scania was acquired
in 1991 by Investor AB.
In 1999, Saab produced almost 128,000 cars. Swedish
production facilities are located in Trollhattan (Saab's
headquarters) for the 9-3 and 9-5 models, Sodertalje (engines)
and Gothenburg (transmissions). In addition, the 9-3 Convertible
is assembled at Valmet Automotive in Uusikaupunki, Finland. Saab
employs almost 10,000 people worldwide.
Saab cars are sold in 50 markets around the world. The
major markets for Saab are the United States, the United
Kingdom, Sweden and Germany.