Cyclic Olefin Copolymers: Healthcare and Packaging Take Center Stage as Leading End Users

The healthcare sector is characterized by a labyrinth of laws and regulations imposed on various products, ranging from medicines and medical devices, to even the smallest component used in the packaging of these products. Cyclic olefin copolymers are becoming the most sought-after plastic used in healthcare and packaging, creating new opportunities for manufacturers and suppliers. The potential for innovation in the cyclic olefin copolymers landscape expanded with a mounting number of packaging companies amassing to embrace them as a barrier material, and Transparency Market Research (TMR) offers a complete assessment on the growth prospects that will shape the future of this market.

In its latest offering, TMR provides critical information about the industry-wide adoption of cyclic olefin copolymers and manufacturers’ strategies, to stay ahead of the curve in this space. The study finds that, over 54 kilo tons of cyclic olefin copolymers were consumed worldwide, and the market was valued at nearly US$ 600 million in 2018. The growing demand for cyclic olefin copolymers in a wide range of end-use industries, such as packaging, diagnostics, optics, and electronics, is expected to provide an impetus to the growth of this landscape in the coming years.

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Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Supplanting Polyacrylonitrile (PAN)-based polymers in Pharmaceutical Packaging

The demand for cyclic olefin copolymers has been high in various end-use industries, including packaging, healthcare, electronics, and optics. However, nearly 20 kilo tons of cyclic olefin copolymers were consumed by the packaging industry in 2018, which was valued at over US$ 205 million. With over one-third revenue share of the global market for cyclic olefin copolymers, the packaging space is likely to remain the most lucrative end-use industry for market players in the coming years.

The growing demand for cyclic olefin copolymer resins is mainly attributed to the need for an efficient resin with high chemical resistance and optical transparency, to replace high-cost PAN-based polymers, which are colloquially known through the Barex brand in the medical packaging industry. The sales of PAN in the food-packaging industry were impacted by the adoption of barrier materials, including ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH), and this trend also spread through the pharmaceutical-packaging industry with the rise in the adoption of cyclic olefin copolymers.

Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) in the healthcare sector, despite the regulatory constraints associated with changing medical packaging materials, are switching from PAN-based polymers to cyclic olefin copolymers. The demand for packaging material with superior chemical performance will only grow in the coming years, which is likely to reflect in the rapid growth in the consumption of cyclic olefin copolymers in the packaging industry.

Stakeholders’ Strategies Revolve around Research & Development

In the market, where end-use industries range from electronics to healthcare, manufacturers and suppliers of cyclic olefin copolymers are building their upcoming business strategies based on the dynamic requirements from these end users. Leading manufacturers are strengthening their research & development facilities to innovate the performance characteristics of cyclic olefin copolymers so as to suit the end-user demand. Leading suppliers in the cyclic olefin copolymers market have been focusing on increasing the size of their distribution units, especially in developed regions such as North America and Europe. Market leaders are likely to consolidate their positions with the development of their patented manufacturing technologies to expand their product ranges.

Manufacturers are building their strategies focusing on the packaging industry as the target end-use industry. However, threats from low-cost plastics continue to restrict the growth of cyclic olefin copolymers market players. While they are emerging as a commercial alternative for PAN-based polymers in packaging, cheaper and commonly available plastics such as acrylic and polycarbonates, replacing cyclic olefin copolymers in most applications. Though large companies such as SABIC, PolyPlastics Inc., and Johnson & Johnson are boosting the adoption of cyclic olefin copolymers, owing to their superior chemical properties, the adoption of cost-competitive plastics is likely to remain high among small- and medium-sized end users in this market.

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Analysis on the Competitive Landscape of the Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market

The global market for cyclic olefin copolymers is highly consolidated among the top four companies, such as TOPAS Advanced Polymers GmbH, Zeon Corporation, JSR Corporation, and Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. Most frontrunners in the cyclic olefin copolymers landscape are headquartered in Asia Pacific, making the region a top revenue pocket for leading players as well as new entrants. Nearly half the share of the global consumption of cyclic olefin copolymers is observed in the Asia Pacific region, with a strong presence of incumbents in Japan and China.

Top companies in this landscape have been on the acquisition spree to maintain their position and compete on their technological expertise in the cyclic olefin copolymers market. For example, in January 2018, Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. acquired ARRK Corporation, a Japanese provider of development support services, to enhance the company’s network to offer products on an international level. In March 2018, TOPAS Advanced Polymers GmbH announced that it would acquire the Polyplastics Group, a global supplier of engineering thermoplastics, to strengthen its position in the cyclic olefin copolymers landscape in the Americas.

Market leaders are also focusing on expanding their production capacities and product development through investments in research & development (R&D). Zeon Corporation has a significant share in the global production of cyclic olefin copolymers, and has been banking on its strategies on the expansion of its manufacturing capabilities. In October 2018, it announced that it would establish a new manufacturing line for retardation film used in large-screen TVs, made of cyclic olefin copolymers. The company also declared its plans to expand its production capacity of ZeonorFilm™ Optical Film, which is also manufactured using cyclic olefin copolymers, to boost its presence in a wide range of end-use industries.

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Analyst Viewpoint

The authors of this report show concerns about the impact of the dominance of a limited number of players in the cyclic olefin copolymers market. Despite the growing awareness about the superior chemical performance properties of cyclic olefin copolymers, there has not been a significant rise in their production since the past ten years. The low availability and high cost of cyclic olefin copolymers will restrict the growth of the cyclic olefin copolymers market. However, their adoption as an alternative to PAN-based polymers in the healthcare packaging sector will augur well for market players in the coming years.

Read More
  • Cyclic olefin copolymers are a new class of polymers, which can be used in a wide range of applications during polymerization. They possess properties such as low density, high transparency, and barrier to moisture.
  • The key end-use industries of cyclic olefin copolymers include packaging, healthcare, diagnostics, optics, and electronics. The packaging segment holds a prominent share in the global cyclic olefin copolymers market, due to the rise in the demand for these copolymers in industries such as food, drugs, cosmetics, and consumer products.

What are Key Growth Drivers of the Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market?

  • The global cyclic olefin copolymers market is projected to expand at a significant pace during the forecast period, primarily owing to the rise in the demand for these copolymers in the packaging  Cyclic olefin copolymers are employed in the packaging of electronics, pharmaceuticals, optical, and food.
  • The use of conventional plastic has been banned in many countries. Governments across the world are striving to shift to sustainable alternatives for conventional plastic resins, such as cyclic olefin resins, for packaging. Therefore, growth in the packaging segment is expected to drive the global cyclic olefin copolymers market.
  • Most copolymers are moisture-sensitive. Films and components may undergo subtle shifts in dimensions and other properties during periods of high humidity. However, cyclic olefin copolymers remain unaffected by moisture and heat. This property of cyclic olefin copolymers is likely to encourage a wide range of end-use industries to opt for them.

What are Key Growth Challenges of the Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market?

  • Currently, cyclic olefin copolymers are not available in large quantities, as they are costly to manufacture and have a limited number of applications. Additionally, lack of awareness about the benefits of cyclic olefin copolymers is hampering the market.
  • Companies operating in the packaging industry strive to lower the cost of packaging. This adversely affects the usage of cyclic olefin copolymers in applications other than pharmaceuticals.

 Lucrative Opportunities in the Global Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market

  • Cyclic olefin copolymers have emerged as microfluidic materials, which offer low water absorption, high optical clarity, excellent resistance to chemicals, and come with an exceptional moisture barrier. These properties have made cyclic olefin copolymers a preferred choice in microfluidics applications.
  • Cyclic olefin copolymers are emerging as the 'go-to' material in microfluidics. They are expected to meet the rising demand of the healthcare industry. OEMs are anticipated to continue to use cyclic olefin copolymers due to their ability to enhance design, and manufacture microfluidic parts used in analytical systems, research, and biomedical devices.

Asia Pacific a Prominent Region in the Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market

  • Asia Pacific is a prominent consumer of cyclic olefin copolymers in terms of value as well as volume. Japan is a key country in terms of the production and consumption of cyclic olefin copolymers in the region. Major players in the cyclic olefin copolymers operate in Japan.
  • After Japan, China is a major consumer of cyclic olefin copolymers in Asia Pacific. The increase in the demand for cyclic olefin copolymers in packaging applications is boosting the market in China.

Europe Offers Growth Opportunities

  • Europe is another prominent region in terms of the production and consumption cyclic olefin copolymers. Germany is a highly lucrative country in the cyclic olefin copolymers market in Europe.
  • Production capacity expansion and increase in research activities to manufacture cyclic olefin copolymers at low costs are boosting the market in the region.
  • On March 27, 2018, Polyplastics Co., Ltd. merged its wholly-owned subsidiary, Polyplastics USA, Inc., with TOPAS Advanced Polymers Inc., in the U.S. This merger aims to integrate the U.S. business model and brand value of TOPAS COC, which is owned by TOPAS Advanced Polymers Inc., in order to make sales and marketing more efficient.

Leading Players in Market

Key players operating in the global cyclic olefin copolymers market are TOPAS Advanced Polymers GmbH, ZEON CORPORATION, Mitsui Chemicals, Inc., and JSR Corporation. These manufacturers are reaching out to their customers through suppliers such as Polyplastics Co., Ltd., Polysciences, Inc., Ravago Group, VELOX GmbH, LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V., Goodfellow, and Dalian Great Fortune Chemical Co., Ltd.

Transparency Market Research (TMR) recently published a market study on the global market for cyclic olefin copolymers. An extensive analysis of the key industry drivers, challenges, market trends, and market structure is also included in the cyclic olefin copolymers market report. The market study presents thorough information, and it elucidates how the cyclic olefin copolymers market is expected expand during the forecast period of 2019-2027.

This market research report conducted by TMR offers insights about the various factors driving demand, with the help of detailed analysis of the cyclic olefin copolymers market. Key indicators of the cyclic olefin copolymers market growth, which include Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR), Year-on-Year (Y-o-Y) growth, value chain analysis, and supply chain analysis, are assessed in detail in the study, to help readers understand the growth prospects of the cyclic olefin copolymers market for the assessment period.

TMR’s study on the cyclic olefin copolymers market offers a comprehensive assessment of the popular business strategies adopted by leading stakeholders in the market, and sheds light on the imperatives for succeeding in the cyclic olefin copolymers market. In this study, readers can also find unique, yet accurate information on the growth prospects of the cyclic olefin copolymers market, to help them in making appropriate business decisions.

On analyzing industry-validated data, facts, and important statistics about the global expansion of the cyclic olefin copolymers market, comprehensive information about the growth prospects of the cyclic olefin copolymers market has been presented in a seamless format in the report. The information featured in the report is segmented into chapters to offer a comprehensive structure to the cyclic olefin copolymers market report.

What are the Key Segments of the Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market?

TMR’s study on the cyclic olefin copolymers market classifies information into four broader categories—grade, end-use industry, and region. The market dynamics and changing trends associated with the aforementioned segments of the cyclic olefin copolymers market are featured in detail in this study.

Grade

End-Use Industry

Region

Resins

Packaging

North America

Films

Healthcare

Europe

 

Diagnostics

Asia Pacific

 

Optics

Middle East & Africa

 

Electronics

Latin America

 

Others

 

The study provides complete information about the adoption of cyclic olefin copolymers based on channels and systems across five geographical regions— North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa. Readers can find comprehensive reasoning about the estimates on revenue share of each segment in the global cyclic olefin copolymers market in these geographical regions through the forecast period.

What are the Key Questions Answered in TMR’s Cyclic Olefin Copolymers Market Report?

  • What is the scope of growth for cyclic olefin copolymers in the healthcare industry?
  • What is the influence of changing trends in the diagnostics landscape on the cyclic olefin copolymers market?
  • What are the risks of investing in emerging markets for cyclic olefin copolymers?
  • How is the changing growth prospects of the chemicals industry impacting the growth of the cyclic olefin copolymers market?
  • What are the low-hanging opportunities for stakeholders in the cyclic olefin copolymers market?
  • Which factors are expected to impede the growth of the cyclic olefin copolymers market during the forecast period?

Research Methodology

A robust approach and unique research methodology is utilized by TMR to conduct the trend analysis for the cyclic olefin copolymers market and reach conclusions about market size-related information. Secondary resources referred to by analysts during the production of the cyclic olefin copolymers market study include statistics from governmental organizations, white papers, trade journals, and internal and external proprietary databases.

Secondary resources that contributed to the production of this report include information from organizations such as The Polymer Society, The Plastics Industry Association, Asian Polymer Association, International Biodegradable Polymers Association, Northern Ireland Polymers Association (NIPA), The Society of Polymer Science, and The Society for Polymer Science, India.

Primary resources contributing to the report are enterprise size expert inputs, discussions with key opinion leaders, response analysis, and data triangulation. The combination of data acquired through primary and secondary resources ensures the accuracy, validity, and reliability of the estimated values reached by the analysts.

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