Despite reporting two days ago that Saab was on the verge of bankruptcy, it has been pulled back from the edge (again) today by Chinese automaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co.
Saab confirmed in a statement this morning that Youngman has issued the first payment, reportedly around $15 million, of a $97 million bridge loan that will help keep the Swedish automaker solvent during its reorganization while it waits for both Chinese and Swedish authorities to approve a much larger investment of about 245 million Euro by Youngman and fellow Chinese carmaker Pang Da. Saab expects it will have the full $97 million loan in hand by October 22.
Saab sounds confident that both governments will approve the investment, though Chinese authorities have sunk deals like this before by dragging their feet or refusing to grant approval. A similar investment deal by China's Hawtai Motor Group was abandoned earlier this year for a number of reasons, chief among them the government's inability to approve the transaction in time.