Global Thermoplastic Elastomers Market to reach US$ 15,287.7 mn in 2018, Rising Applications in Automobile Industry to Drive Demand for Thermoplastic Elastomers

The global thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) market is led by large multinational companies who have their presence across the value chain. Key companies leading in the SBC market are Sinopec, Kraton, LCY Chemical, and Dynasol. The players leading in the thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) market are Bayer, BASF, Huntsman, and Dow Chemicals. There are frequent mergers, acquisitions and partnerships among players. The threat of substitutes is expected to rise from medium to high owing to regulatory pressure to use bio-based alternatives. There exists a considerable threat of forward integration from raw material suppliers, states a new report by Transparency Market Research (TMR).

Capacity addition in Asia Pacific is expected to lead to an oversupply, thus the supplier power is expected to remain medium in the coming years. Buyers are looking for long term supply contract and agreements to gain cost benefits. However, there exists a potential threat of backward integration from buyers. Thus, the buyer power is expected to rise from medium to high.

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According to the report, the global thermoplastic elastomers market is expected to rise from US$12,650.8 mn in 2015 to US$ 15,287.7 mn in 2018. By product, the styrenic block copolymers (SBC) segment is expected to lead and account for 45.8% of the market by 2018. Asia Pacific is expected to lead in the SBC market, accounting for 46.3% of the global thermoplastic elastomers market in 2018.

Use in Automobile Industry to Drive Demand for Thermoplastic Elastomers

Thermoplastic elastomers are finding applications in the automobile industry as latest technologies are being used to manufacture automobile components, thus driving their demand. Using thermoplastic elastomers for auto component manufacturing is leading to a reduction in the overall weight of automobiles, thus fueling their demand. Thermoplastic elastomers are free from halogen and plasticizer. In addition to this, they have superior abrasion resistance and give high mechanical performance, and thus they are increasingly being preferred over PVC and other materials containing plasticizers. This rising trend towards reducing the reliance on PVC materials is propelling the thermoplastic elastomers market.

Volatility in Raw Material Prices to Impact Market Negatively

All thermoplastic elastomers products are derived from crude oil. The fluctuating price structure of crude oil is expected to have a direct impact on the overall production cost of thermoplastic elastomers products. This is expected to pose as a challenge for the market. “Growing environmental concerns regarding the use of synthetic thermoplastic elastomers will hinder the market’s growth as well,” states a TMR analyst. Regulatory authorities such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the U.S. and Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) in Europe have laid down stringent regulations against synthetic TPE producers. This will act as another challenge for the global thermoplastic elastomers market.

Development of Bio-based Thermoplastic Elastomers to Create Growth Opportunities

Key TPE manufacturers such as DuPont, Arkema, PolyOne, and Merquinsa have successfully ventured into the bio-based TPE market. These companies are making use of renewable sources as their raw materials for the production of bio-based thermoplastic elastomers. Bio-based alternatives of thermoplastic elastomers have the potential to replace the synthetic TPE market. Bio-based TPEs can be used in almost every end use industry where synthetic TPEs are being used. Since bio-based TPEs not only provide a clean solution, but also gives cost competitiveness to bio-based TPE producers against their synthetic counterparts, they are expected to create significant growth opportunities for the market.

This information is based on the findings of a report published by Transparency Market Research titled “Thermoplastic Elastomers Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends, and Forecast 2012 – 2018.”

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