Michelin beyond tires, with hydrogen


Michelin is once again the world’s leading tire manufacturer in terms of company valuation, ahead of Bridgestone and Continental. A French success which however seeks to diversify. The boss, Florent Menegaux, unveiled Michelin’s roadmap for the years to come: hydrogen, but also 3D printing and even medical equipment.

On the financial side, first, Michelin wants to grow. The company has important ambitions with growth through business buyouts and a policy of dividends to shareholders which will be increased by 2023.

Above all, Michelin has teamed up with the French equipment manufacturer Faurecia to found Symbio, a joint venture that will produce fuel cells in particular, in the Saint-Fons plant. For the moment, the only known major customer is Stellantis, which wants to develop its hydrogen utility vehicles. But Symbio would be in discussion with other manufacturers, and not necessarily only in the automotive sector. Michelin can rely on recent figures announcing an environmentally friendly hydrogen production (without fossil products) less expensive than natural gas by 2050 in some fifteen countries.

For the time being, Michelin is mainly focusing on two markets for hydrogen: Europe and China. But the manufacturer is now adding the United States to its bow, especially since the arrival of Joe Biden to the presidency.

At the end of the decade, Symbio is aiming for 1.5 billion euros in hydrogen sales, and 12% worldwide market share.

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