Michelin pumps EUR37 mn to revitalise former German tyre facility

Michelin pumps EUR37 mn to revitalise former German tyre facility

French tyre maker Michelin’s Bamberg tyre-manufacturing facility in the city of Hallstadt (Bamberg District), inaugurated almost 50 years ago and which closed down in 2019, will be transformed into a facility dedicated to innovation, to be known as the Cleantech Innovation Park. The centre will be financed by Michelin, who will be providing the site and the buildings, the Land of Bavaria, the City of Hallstadt and the District of Bamberg. Around EUR37 million is planned to be invested for a complete overhaul of the site, which is due to be operational end 2023.

Totally re-invented, the 8,000 sq m site will house specialised companies focusing on artificial intelligence, digitalisation and sustainable mobility (hydrogen and electro-mobility).

An innovation centre for the local community, Cleantech Innovation Park aims to satisfy the new requirements of the region’s industrial enterprises. The aim is to support the northern Bavarian automobile industry’s transformation, by developing state-of-the-art technologies designed to also reduce global CO2 emissions. A unique ecosystem of renowned companies, start-ups, universities and research institutes, the centre aims to be a unique network of innovation combining the skills of renowned companies, universities and research institutes (the Fraunhofer Institute, the Universities of Bamberg, Bayreuth and Friedrich-Alexander in Nuremberg-Erlangen), start-ups and specialized small companies.

The governance of the centre will be in the hands of Cleantech Innovation Park gmbH, a joint-venture company set up in December 2021, under the direction of Peter Keller, former senior manager in the German subsidiary of the Michelin Group.

The creation of the Cleantech Innovation Park is the result of an ambitious project to revitalise Michelin’s former tyre manufacturing facility in Hallstadt, whose closure was announced in September 2019.

It is a significant part of the global initiatives launched several years ago by the Michelin Group to accompany the changes in its European industrial presence. A similar reconversion program, the Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc, has been successfully completed on the former Michelin site in Dundee, Scotland.

A similar operation is also ongoing in La Roche-sur-Yon, France, with the ATINEA project. These economic revitalization programs are complementary with the employee programs put in place by Michelin in cases of facility closures or reorganization of site activities. Such programs are a priority for Michelin – for example, some 84% of the former staff at the Michelin facility in Bamberg have either found new employment or have benefited from pre-retirement programs.