A number of possible investors in Opel/Vauxhall have been identified by GM. According to CEO Fritz Henderson these are serious people ready to do a deal.

There are six different parties interested in putting money into General Motors' European brand Opel/Vauxhall. GM CEO Fritz Henderson said at a news conference in Detroit that both Opel and SAAB were being courted but Opel looks the likeliest to snatch a buyer. An investment agreement would have to be quickly concluded or financing raised, say those close to the situation, so that if and when GM files for bankruptcy in the US the international business is protected financially.

"More than six people have expressed interest, serious people," Henderson said. "Many of them are financial players, some of them are industrial players. I would expect that work would get done in the next two to three weeks so that process has kicked off."

He said SAAB's books were open for those interested in looking at the Swedish automaker in order for them to get a better sense of where the company is financially. No one has come out publicly to state their interest in either Opel or SAAB but speculation is that possible investors are Middle Eastern wealth funds.

Opel is currently under a cloud after Germany declined to bail it out. However the German government is prepared to guarantee loans on condition that an investor in the business is found. GM had requested guarantees of 3.3 billion euros (4.3 billion USD).

Things are not all gloomy at Opel however. Scrappage incentives which pay people €2,500 to scrap their old cars for new ones have helped lift sales for the Opel Corsa and Agila for example. Also the new Insignia appears to be a sales hit.