AMSTERDAM - Dutch sports car maker Spyker Cars NV remains interested in buying Swedish auto brand Saab from General Motors and is not aware of any deadlines imposed on the process, a spokesman for Spyker said.
That followed a report in the Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet on Thursday that Joran Hagglund, the state secretary at Sweden's Enterprise Ministry, has told GM it needs to decide this week whether to sell the loss-making business.
Spyker first said on Dec. 2 it was interested in Saab, which GM is scrambling to sell after a deal with Swedish luxury car builder Koenigsegg collapsed. GM has said it would keep Saab on the block through year's end and close it if it appears it can not be sold.
They're not aware of any deadline, the Spyker spokesman said Thursday, adding that the company's interest was unchanged.
Saab also said there was no deadline, but that all sides would need to move quickly to make a deal this year.
It is a tight timeframe and a lot has to happen. There is no formally imposed deadline here, but all the parties involved understand that this has to happen fast, Saab spokeswoman Gunilla Gustavs told Reuters.
Two people with direct knowledge of the discussions told Reuters on Monday that GM was in talks with China's fifth largest car maker, Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Corp (BAIC), about a partial sale of assets associated with Saab.
Any such deal would likely lead to the liquidation of the unsold assets and the loss of more than 3,000 jobs in Sweden. Saab has said it is optimistic a deal can be found that would avoid a carve-up.
Spyker, which has roots dating to 1875, made 43 of its luxury cars last year, selling for 200,000 euros ($294,200) and up. Its primary backers include Russian banking tycoon Vladimir Antonov and his Convers Group, with a 29.9 percent stake.
(Additional reporting by Victoria Klesty in Stockholm, Jui Chakravorty Das in New York and Kevin Krolicki in Detroit; Editing by Jon Loades-Carter and Sharon Lindores) ($1=.6799 Euro)