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Published: Friday, 4/29/2011

Saab gets deal for time to stay afloat, pay debts


STOCKHOLM — Saab Automobile won a critical reprieve Thursday in its effort to stay afloat.

General Motors Co. and the Swedish government agreed to a tentative deal with Saab’s parent company that would allow a financing deal with a Russian businessman.

The deal breaks a logjam that has left Saab’s future in doubt since early April, when the carmaker halted production at its plant in Trollhattan, Sweden, after it was unable to pay suppliers. Spyker Cars, the Dutch sports carmaker that bought Saab from GM in 2010, has struggled to get the company onto solid footing. It had sought to raise cash by selling Saab’s real estate assets to the Russian businessman Vladimir A. Antonov, then leasing them back. But the deal was held up by conditions imposed by the European Investment Bank, GM, and the Swedish government.

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