Michelin (full name: Compagnie Générale des Établissements Michelin) is a French tire manufacturer founded in 1888 and is one of the world's leading tire companies today with some 127,000 employees world wide.
One of the company's most notable innovations was the radial tire, introduced in 1946 and today is the most widespread tire type in use.
In 1988, Michelin bought the tire and rubber manufacturing divisions of the B.F. Goodrich Company founded in 1870 and in 1990 bought Uniroyal Inc., founded in 1892 as the United States Rubber Company.
The company's symbol is one of the world's oldest trademarks introduced in 1898 by French artist O'Galop. The Michelin Man, or "Bibendum" was commissioned by André Michelin as a caricature of his brother, Édouard after he noticed that a display of stacked tyres resembled a human form. Today, Bibendum is one of the world's most recognized trademarks, representing Michelin in over 150 countries.
The name of the plump tyre-man has entered the language to describe the appearance of someone obese or wearing comically bulky clothing: "How can I wrap up warm without looking like the Michelin Man?". In Spain, "michelín" has acquired the meaning of the "tires" or folds of fatty skin around the waist.
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