The global superabsorbent polymers market is highly concentrated due to the presence of few leading companies with the maximum share in the market, reports Transparency Market Research in a new study. The key players are focusing on increasing production capacities by setting up more manufacturing plants to enhance their sales. The top three players in the global superabsorbent polymers market, NIPPON SHOKUBAI Co. Ltd., BASF SE, and Evonik Industries held a share of approximately 61.7% in 2013.
To expand their business, the key companies are focusing on business expansion and are also entering into mergers and acquisitions with regional manufacturers. Owing to rising regulations restricting the use of petroleum-based polymers, companies are setting up manufacturing plants for the production of bio-based polymers. In terms of revenue, the global superabsorbent polymers market is projected to expand at a 5.5% CAGR from 2014 to 2020. The global superabsorbent polymers market stood at a value of US$6.71 bn in 2015 and is projected to touch a valuation of US$8.78 bn by the end of 2020.
Growth in Baby Diaper Industry to Augment Sales of Superabsorbent Polymers
As superabsorbent polymers have the ability to absorb large quantities of water and aqueous solutions, they are widely used in applications such as adult incontinence pads, baby diapers, and medical dressings. Baby diapers are the prime revenue contributors in terms of demand and share in the global superabsorbent polymers market. The rise in birth rate has resulted in the growth of the baby diapers industry. As a result, the demand for superabsorbent polymers has increased over the past few years. Moreover, the increase in sanitation awareness among consumers is expected to drive the demand for superabsorbent polymers in the coming years.
Developing nations such as India, China, Brazil, and Indonesia are the key regions aiding the growth of the global superabsorbent market owing to the growth in the baby diapers industry in these countries. The initiatives taken for the development of superabsorbent polymers products with high absorption capacity are expected to further increase the demand for superabsorbent polymers.
Unstable Cost of Raw Materials to Hinder Growth of Superabsorbent Polymers Industry
According to a TMR analyst, “The volatile cost of raw materials plays a major role in inhibiting the growth of the superabsorbent polymers market.” For instance, acrylic acid which is produced from propylene is an important raw material for the production of superabsorbent polymers. As propylene is an oil derivative, the fluctuation in the prices of crude oil is likely to have a negative effect on the production of superabsorbent polymers. Moreover, the high cost of energy incurred during the production of superabsorbent polymers is another major factor inhibiting the growth of the global superabsorbent polymers market.
Bio-based Superabsorbent Polymers to Provide Lucrative Growth Opportunities to Manufacturers
Over the past few years, superabsorbent polymers have emerged as potential materials used in diapers and sanitary napkins. The commercial value of superabsorbent polymers has also increased over time. Moreover, superabsorbent polymers have gained popularity in applications such as fragrance carriers in diapers, artificial snow, potting soil, and incontinence products. As a result, the demand for hygienic and bio-based products in these applications has taken a increased over the years A rise in consumer awareness regarding sustainability has resulted in a rise in the demand for alternates to petroleum-based polymers. Manufacturers of superabsorbent polymers are likely to gain lucrative growth opportunities from the increasing popularity of bio-based superabsorbent polymers. Many leading companies are exploring opportunities in the production of bio-acrylic acid.
North America is likely to emerge dominant in terms of volume in the global superabsorbent polymers market with a share of 27.5% in 2020. Baby diapers are expected to maintain a lead in among all application segments until 2020 with a volume share of 75.1%.
The review is based on the findings of a TMR report titled, “Superabsorbent Polymers Market - Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2014 - 2020.”
The report segments the global superabsorbent polymers (SAP) market as:
- Superabsorbent Polymers (SAP) Market - Product Segment Analysis
- Sodium polyacrylate
- Polyacrylamide copolymer
- Others (Ethylene-maleic anhydride copolymer, polyvinyl alcohol copolymers, etc.)
- Superabsorbent Polymers (SAP) Market - Application Analysis
- Baby diapers
- Adult incontinence products
- Feminine hygiene products
- Others (Paper packaging, medical, agriculture, etc.)
- Superabsorbent Polymers (SAP) Market - Regional Analysis
- North America
- Asia Pacific
- Rest of the World (RoW)
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