About Michelin Tyres

Michelin is a French tyre manufacturer based in Clermont-Ferrand, France. It is the second largest tyre manufacturer in the world after Bridgestone. Founded in 1889, Michelin’s mission is to contribute in the mobility of goods and people and to the development of society. Michelin owns the BFGoodrich, Kleber, Tigar, Riken, Kormoran and Uniroyal (in North America) tyre brands.

Michelin is committed to conducting all business in a responsible manner including delivering efficient solutions to meet the expectations and aspirations of customers and shareholders. This also means respecting the natural environment while achieving economical operations at the same time.
Every decision and action Michelin undertakes is based on the following five fundamental values:

  • Respect for Customers

  • Respect for People

  • Respect for Shareholders

  • Respect for the Environment

  • Respect for Facts

A brief history:

  • 1905 – 1914: Michelin was formally established on May 11th, 1905.  By the end of 1906, the company employed over 50 people and was forced to relocate from its office in South Kensington. On Friday 20th January 1911, the new Michelin Headquarters was opened and remained Michelin's London base for 75 years

  • 1915 – 1924: In 1921, Michelin provided the first numbered road map in the UK. The huge increase in middle class car ownership led to a large incline of holiday travel by automobile

  • 1925 – 1934: Michelin decided to open a factory in the UK to combat high import taxes on cars and components. The factory supplied domestic car makers, outlets and customers in the UK & Ireland, with Stoke-on-Trent decided on as the destination in 1926. The first Stoke-On-Trent-made tyre was produced in November 1927

  • 1935 – 1944: Michelin's contributed to the war through tyre production and also the assembly of military vehicles that were sent over from the USA. A small fleet of technical service vans kitted out with everything needed to demonstrate the fitting and inflating of a pneumatic tyre was created prior to the start of the war. Unfortunately, none of the original vans survived but a working example of the ‘snubnose Morris’ was recreated and can be seen at automobile shows and other classic car gatherings

  • 1945 – 1954: Michelin established The Michelin Athletic Club, a sports and social club in Clermont and this was incorporated into the UK flourishing over the years, with the 'MAC' a natural part of life for employees

  • 1955 – 1964: Michelin's innovative X steel-braced radial tyre was produced to meet the vast potential for international growth and new factories for Truck Tyres and Car Tyres were opened in Burnley and Belfast respectively during this period.

  • 1965 – 1974: The ‘Red Guide’ to Great Britain & Ireland was reintroduced in March 1974, after a 43 year absence, which took four years to produce with over 15,000 establishments examined and evaluated. The result was a list of 2,330 hotels, 331 motels and 981 restaurants located throughout the UK & Ireland

  • 1975 – 1984: By the mid-1970s post war prosperity from the 1950/60s had all but ended and this led to drastic restructuring and the closure of the Belfast plant. However, the period was not without its high points as Michelin excelled in Formula One racing, securing four of the top eight places in the 1983 British GP

  • 1985 – 1994: In 1986 René Zingraff is appointed as a co-managing partner of the Michelin Group having spent six years at the Stoke-on-Trent plant as head of the laboratory. 1986 was a good year for Michelin, sponsoring the four TT production races on the Isle of Man and achieving a rise in UK profit to £56 million. In 1991, Uniroyal won a contract to build the largest civilian trucks ordered from a British manufacturer for many years. The Unipower S45 Contractor were specified to run on Michelin tyres

  • 1995 – Present: In 1998 Bibendum was one hundred years old with the year being declared 'The Year of Bibendum'. Today Michelin in the UK is 113 years old and has established a brand licensing programme, 'Michelin Lifestyle' and has also created an economic development arm 'Michelin Development'. Michelin is still the largest tyre manufacturer in the British Isles and is looking forward to the next hundred years