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Genii, Ecclestone drop Saab bid

Posted by Clifford Atiyeh  January 25, 2010 12:45 PM

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Genii Capital, the Luxembourg investment firm that joined Formula One billionaire Bernie Ecclestone in a last-minute bid for Saab earlier this month, said today it was withdrawing its undisclosed offer for the troubled Swedish brand.

"Unfortunately, Genii Capital believes that the timing of the next stage of the shutdown process at Saab is not compatible with its requirements for putting in place a solid business platform for the future and closing the transaction," the firm wrote in a press release.

The decision came at the same time that GM announced interim CEO Ed Whitacre would hold a permanent position. Whitacre, a former AT&T CEO who took over the company after GM's board ousted Fritz Henderson one month earlier, did not elaborate today when asked if Saab's sale would continue.

On Jan. 6, one day before GM's previous deadline, Whitacre said, "It's real easy. Just show up with the money and you can have it." But GM has continued to send mixed messages, claiming that Saab will be dissolved even as Spyker continues to wrestle with the company this week over sale details.

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Clifford Atiyeh is an automotive writer and car enthusiast . He has spent his entire life driving cars he doesn't own.
In the garage: 1995 21-speed Iron Horse, 2002 Jeep Wrangler X (by association)
Bill Griffith is a veteran Boston Globe reporter, having reviewed cars for more than 10 years and serving as assistant sports editor for 25 years. He was also the paper's sports media columnist.
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AAA's Car Doctor, John Paul John Paul is public affairs manager for AAA Southern New England, a certified mechanic, and a Globe columnist. He hosts a weekly radio show on WROL.
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Keith Griffin is president of the New England Motor Press Association and edits the used car section on About.com. He also writes for the Hartford Business Journal and various weekly newspapers in Connecticut.
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