Why Saab had to die

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The autopsies for the Saab car company are rolling in. Forbes’ Joann Muller writes that the head of Spyker Cars, which bought the company from General Motors, “learned, as so many before him . . . that it takes an enormous amount of capital to operate an automotive company. And this industry already has too many brands, and too many factories for all to be profitable.” Forbes’ Patrick Hanlon adds that “Saab was never a brand at all. . . . And because the car held no real meaning for consumers, and no reason for being, it ceased to be.”

But there’s far more to the story than that, say two business school professors. Matthias Holweg, of Cambridge Judge Business School, and Nick Oliver, of University of Edinburgh Business School, have looked at the Swedish car company’s whole 62-year history and found that the heart of the story is that it wound up stuck in an impossible, deadly place, between mass-market luxury and high-end luxury.

First, don’t blame GM, they say.

Full story: Why Saab Had to Die – Forbes.