THE COVID-19 CRISIS

People helping people

As a manufacturer in China for more than 30 years, Michelin found itself on the front lines of the health crisis. At the first signs of the pandemic, two priorities were defined: safeguard the health of employees and ensure business continuity. In this way, the Group hoped to safely resume operations as soon as possible to limit the financial and jobs impact of the crisis

Protecting the health of employees

In China, production resumed on February 10, 2020 thanks to the deployment of a disciplined health protocol, an experience that was shared with the other regional organizations.

 

By mid-March, the lack of available masks in Europe prompted Michelin to shut down production at 21 plants employing 20,000 people in Spain, France and Italy, while in the corporate and administrative operations, working from home became the norm. In the succeeding weeks, other plants were closed as the virus spread across Eastern Europe, North America and South America.

 

To prepare for the restart of production, several plants began to make hand sanitizer and surgical masks. Thanks to this dedication and hard work, the European plants gradually resumed operations in April and all Michelin facilities worldwide were back on line by the end of June.

Safeguarding the Group’s viability

To conserve cash, Michelin deployed a full range of measures, including reducing capital expenditure, dividend payout and corporate overheads, tracking supply and demand on a weekly basis, and holding prices firm.

 

It also strengthened its financial resources by raising the confirmed line of credit to €2.5 billion and successfully issuing €1.5 billion in bonds.

 

Michelin maintained its commitments to all its partners, taking care to protect the most vulnerable, such as small rubber producers.
It limited the use of furloughing and its impact on wages and public finances.

 

The Managers, Executive Committee members, willing managers and the Chairman and independent members of the Supervisory Board all donated part of their compensation to finance a Covid-19-related research project and a fund to support the families of employees particularly hard hit by the crisis.

 

Supporting communities, first responders and healthcare workers

In every host country, the Group supported communities, first responders and healthcare workers by donating masks, hand sanitizer and personal protective equipment, donating tires and free servicing for emergency vehicles, and providing financial support.

In response to appeals from hospitals, Michelin mobilized its materials and 3D printing expertise to produce sterilizable face shields, ventilator components, and variable pressure air cushion kits to help intensive care patients to breathe easier.

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