Saab given deadline

May 29, 2009

, STOCKHOLM, May 29  – Sweden\’s Saab Automobile will get another three months to restructure its business, a senior legal source said, as parent company General Motors looks to sell the loss-making unit.

Cecilia Tisell, the judge sitting on the case, said in an emailed statement that the court had agreed to give the Swedish automaker more time.

"The decision has been taken. The reorganisation will be allowed to continue until August 20," she wrote in a written response to questions.

Tisell did not cite the reasons behind the decision.

Saab asked the Vaenersborg district court in southwestern Sweden for the extension on May 19 after first filing to reorganise in February this year.

Under the procedure, which is similar to Chapter 11 in the US, Saab will get protection from its creditors until August 20 as it prepares itself for new ownership.

However, Saab has previously said it is unlikely to need the whole three months to complete the process.

GM wants to sell loss-making Saab, based in Trollhaettan, southwestern Sweden, in a bid to shore up its own badly damaged balance sheet and has appointed Germany\’s Deutsche Bank to advise them on the sale.

Saab employs about 3,400 people in Sweden. Including suppliers, some 15,000 jobs in the country are believed to be at risk if the company were to disappear.

The Swedish automaker sold 93,000 cars worldwide in 2008, its website said.

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