Michelin to cut 2,300 jobs in France in shift to new materials

by BLOOMBERG

Michelin plans to cut as many as 2,300 jobs in France over about three years as it focuses on the premium tire market while diversifying into recycling, new materials and projects in areas including hydrogen.

Although no factories will be closed, a revamp of Michelin plants will result in as many as 1,200 job losses, mostly through early retirement and voluntary redundancy, it said in a statement on Wednesday. The remainder of the cutbacks will be in services to help boost efficiency by 5% a year, it said.

Cie. Generale des Etablissements Michelin said it’s battling “profound” structural shifts in the tire market following a flood of low-cost tires into Europe from China. Demand for car- and light-truck tires there and in North America helped Michelin raise its full-year guidance in October, offsetting the drag from Europe. Chief Executive Officer Florent Menegaux wants to further modernize operations in France as part of his push into sustainable materials for tires.

The shares rose as much as 1.2% in early trading in Paris, giving a market value of about 19 billion euros ($23 billion).