Michelin, Faurecia form fuel cells JV

The joint venture combines the hydrogen fuel cell work from both companies, including Faurecia’s partnership with Stelia Aerospace Composites and Michelin’s subsidiary Symbio.

Michelin (Clermont-Ferrand, France), manufacturer of tires and leader in sustainable mobility, and Faurecia (Nanterre, France), technology leader in the automotive industry, announced a joint venture to bring together the companies’ fuel cell work and Michelin’s subsidiary Symbio.

Symbio, a Faurecia Michelin hydrogen company, will be owned equally by Faurecia and Michelin and will develop, produce and market hydrogen fuel cell systems for light vehicles, utility vehicles, trucks and other applications.

Faurecia and Michelin aim to create a world leader in hydrogen fuel cell systems through combining existing and complementary assets from both companies. This will, they say, enable the joint venture to offer a range of hydrogen fuel cell systems for all use cases. For electric vehicles, Faurecia says, fuel cell technology complements battery technology, especially in those use cases requiring intense use and greater autonomy. Fuel cell technology has also recently been selected by the European Union as one of Europe’s six Important Projects of Common Interest.

Michelin’s contribution to this joint venture will be the activities of Symbio, a group subsidiary since February 1 of this year, which is a supplier of hydrogen fuel cell systems associated with a range of digital services, as well as research & development and production activities.

Faurecia will contribute the technological fuel cell expertise it has developed through a strategic partnership with the CEA, its industrial know-how and its strategic relationships with car manufacturers. Faurecia will continue its development of high-pressure hydrogen tanks in partnership with Stelia Aerospace Composites (Toulouse, France), which will also benefit the joint venture.

The cooperation between Michelin and ENGIE, a global energy and services group, for the development of a hydrogen ecosystem, in particular in the field of hydrogen mobility, will also reportedly benefit the joint venture. The agreement between Michelin and Faurecia was signed in the presence of Agnès Pannier-Runacher, Secretary of State at the French Ministry for Economy and Finance. This operation is subject to the approval of the competent merger authorities.