Today, Hubert Aiwanger, Bavarian Minister of State for the Economy, Regional Development and Energy, and Florent Menegaux, Chairman of the Michelin Group, officially laid the foundation stone of the Cleantech Innovation Park in Bamberg, in the presence of Johann Kalb, Landrat for the Bamberg district. , and Thomas Söder, mayor of Hallstadt.
An innovation center for the local community
The Michelin Bamberg tire factory in the town of Hallstadt (Bamberg district), which opened almost 50 years ago, will be transformed into a new facility dedicated to innovation. The 8,000 m2 site has been completely reinvented and will house specialized companies focused on artificial intelligence, digitization and sustainable mobility (hydrogen and electromobility).
The Cleantech Innovation Park wants to meet the new requirements of industrial companies in the region. The aim is to support the transformation of the Northern Bavarian car industry by developing advanced technologies designed to also reduce global CO2 emissions.
A unique ecosystem of renowned companies, start-ups, universities and research institutes
The center aims to be a unique innovation network that combines 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 center will be run by Cleantech Innovation Park gmbH, a joint venture founded in December 2021, led by Peter Keller, former senior manager in the German subsidiary of the Michelin Group. The center will be financed by Michelin, which will supply the site and buildings, the state of Bavaria, the city of Hallstadt and the district of Bamberg. It is planned to invest approximately 37 million euros for a complete renovation of the 8,000 m2 site. The center should be operational by the end of 2023.
An illustration of Michelin’s savoir-faire in revitalization projects
The creation of the Cleantech Innovation Park is the result of an ambitious project to revive the former Michelin tire factory in Hallstadt, the closure of which was announced in September 2019.
It is an important part of the global initiatives launched by the Michelin Group several years ago to accompany the changes in its European industrial presence. A similar conversion programme, the Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc, has been successfully completed on the former Michelin site in Dundee, Scotland. A similar operation is also underway in La Roche-sur-Yon, France, with the ATINEA project. These economic revitalization programs are complementary to the employee programs that Michelin has set up in the event of the closure of facilities or the reorganization of activities on the site. Such programs are a priority for Michelin: for example, some 84% of former staff at the Michelin site in Bamberg have found a new job or have taken advantage of early retirement programmes.
As Florent Menegaux noted: “It’s a promising new industrial adventure that kicks off today at our historic site in Bamberg. The Michelin teams’ expertise in transforming dilapidated industrial facilities and revitalizing the skilled workforce pool is showcased here. And I remind everyone that nothing would have been possible without the trust of our partners – the state of Bavaria, the district of Bamberg and the city of Hallstadt.”