Michelin reports having met its financial objectives in 2016 and its chief executive officer considers the year “a successful milestone in our strategic roadmap.” The tyre maker’s sales volumes increased 2.1 per cent during the year, outperforming the market, and an increase in operating and net income was also recorded.
Mexico still plays a role in Michelin’s future plans. Following Donald Trump’s comments on cross-border import duties and Ford’s decision to scrap plans for a new US$1.6 billion factory in the country, Michelin chief executive officer Jean-Dominique Senard has given his reassurance that the tyre maker hasn’t got cold feet.
European customers can purchase the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S as of this month, and the successor to the Pilot Super Sport will also be launched in other global markets. The tyre enjoyed its North American debut today at the NAIAS, or North American International Auto Show, in Detroit.
Not only has Michelin announced the location of its next Challenge Bibendum – the French manufacturer has given the event a new name: Movin’on. Three years after the last Michelin Challenge Bibendum sustainable mobility get-together in Chengdu, China, Movin’on heads next June to Montreal, Canada.
After a ten-month construction period and with surprisingly little fanfare, on 16 September Michelin opened ‘Urbalad’, its new RDI (Research, Development, Innovation) Campus in the presence of group employees, partners and French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls. Urbalad was built with an investment of €270 million and is expected to, the tyre maker states, “open up a new era for the company.”
While some manufacturers lobby for tyres to be replaced at 3 or even 4 mm, Michelin maintains that the current legal limit of 1.6 mm is “perfectly suited” to modern motoring and has reaffirmed its opposition to a change in the legislation. Indeed, during the course of the Paris Motor Show, Michelin’s top executives will be making this argument with journalists, OEMs and of course the public.
On Friday, Michelin will officially inaugurate its new research and development centre in Ladoux, France. The tyre maker laid the foundation stone for the facility in December 2013 and is investing approximately €280 million in erecting a state-of-the-art, 67,000 square metre building and, from 2018, employing 1,700 new engineers and technicians.
Ground was broken and the first stone set in place for the new Michelin plant in Mexico at a ceremony held yesterday and attended by government dignitaries, key customers and company management. Construction of the plant in León – Michelin’s 69th factory globally and 21st in North America – is expected to begin immediately, with completion currently scheduled for late 2018.
Although its net sales declined 2.0 per cent in the first half of 2016, Michelin increased its profitability in the six months to 30 June. Net sales defied a 2.5 per cent rise in volumes and were lower at €10.29 billion, while operating income increased 11.3 per cent to €1.41 billion and the operating margin grew from 12.0 to 13.7 per cent. Net income was up 8.8 per cent year-on-year to €769 million.
Rumours and reports circulating since April about Michelin intention to build a new Michelin tyre factory in Mexico were confirmed on 4 July when the French company issued news of its plans to build a facility for producing high-end car and light truck tyres there. Michelin says construction of the 142,000 square metre, €450 million factory in León, Guanajuato state will begin in the second half of this year, with tyre production expected to commence in the fourth quarter of 2018. An annual output of 4 to 5 million tyres is planned for the initial production phase, and the León plant will be gradually ramped up.
Pursuant to the decision made by CEO Jean-Dominique Senard on 21 December 2015 and the ninth resolution of the company’s 2015 Shareholders Meeting, Compagnie Générale des Etablissements Michelin has decided to cancel 265,570 treasury shares, an amount representing 0.15 per cent of the total shares outstanding. The effective date of the resulting capital reduction is 28 December 2015.
Compagnie Générale des Etablissements Michelin intends to cancel 4,695,964 of its treasury shares, a figure that represents 2.5 per cent of the total shares outstanding. This course of action is being undertaken based on the decision made by chief executive officer Jean-Dominique Senard on 11 December and the ninth resolution reached at the company’s 2015 Shareholders Meeting on 22 May.
An agreement signed on 4 September marks Michelin’s initial step towards becoming a well-known name in the metal 3D printing sector. The Michelin Group and the Fives Group are joining forces to create Fives Michelin Additive Solutions, a 50/50 joint venture partnership that aims to become a “major metal 3D printing player.” Fives Michelin Additive Solutions will be located near Michelin’s headquarters in Clermont Ferrand, France and initially employ around 20 people from both partners. At least €25 million will be invested into this new joint venture over the first three years.
Michelin reports a year-on-year rise in its net sales, operating income and net income in the first half of 2015. Net sales rose 8.5 per cent to €10.5 billion in the six months to 30 June 2015. Operating income increased 8.9 per cent to €1.3 billion, while operating margin remained constant at 12.0 per cent. At €707 million, net income was up 13.3 per cent year-on-year.
Michelin has bought Blackcircles.com, the number one internet tyre sales company in the United Kingdom, for £50 million. Based in Edinburgh, Blackcircles.com generated £28 million in revenue in 2013. Run by Mike Welch, its founder, Blackcircles.com has enjoyed growth of around 20 per cent per annum since 2008. The company reports that the first quarter of 2015 saw the company achieve revenues 34 per cent higher than Q1 2014.