The global electroactive polymers market holds immense potential as the market is still at its nascent stage and presents a large scope of innovation. This is attracting new players with novel techniques to enter the market and take advantage of the spiraling demand, finds Transparency Market Research (TMR) in a new study. The low capital investment required for the production of electroactive polymers is also prompting new players to venture into the market. This is likely to intensify the degree of competition in the near future.
“The existing players are focusing on product differentiation, product customization, and research and development activities to stay ahead in the market,” says TMR’s lead analyst. The top four players, namely BASF SE, Cabot Corporation, Heraeus Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG, and PolyOne Corporation, represented 23.7% of the overall market in 2015, indicating a highly fragmented nature of the global electroactive polymers market.
The global electroactive polymers market was valued at US$304.8 mn in 2016 and is projected to reach US$514.0 mn by the end of 2024, expanding at a CAGR of 7.6% from 2016 to 2024.
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Conductive Polymer to Remain Most Prominent Product Segment through 2024
On the basis of product, conductive polymer accounted for a whopping share of 83.1% of the overall market volume in 2015. The low cost and easy availability of these polymers are expected to fuel the dominance of the segment through 2024. ICP, on the other hand, is likely to be the most promising segment in terms of volume, making inroads in the shares of conductive polymer. Geographically, North America will continue to command the lion’s share in the global arena in terms of volume until 2024. Asia Pacific will, however, rise at a higher CAGR of 7.1% in terms of volume during the forecast period.
Growing Production of Automobiles Worldwide Stimulates Uptake of Electroactive Polymers
The global market for electroactive polymers is directly influenced by the worldwide market for electronic devices and equipment. “ESD and EMI protection, sensors, actuators, and antistatic packaging are the primary applications of electroactive polymers which are used in the development of electronic devices,” says the author of the report. Therefore, the increasing production of electronic devices is providing a fillip to the global electroactive polymers market. Besides this, sensors and actuators are indispensable parts of automobiles and thus, the robust growth of the automotive sector across the globe is escalating the growth of the market.
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Low Commercial Awareness regarding Benefits of Electroactive Polymers Hampers Growth Prospects
The electroactive polymers market has witnessed strong growth in North America. However, at the overall scale, the market is still at its nascent stage. Commercial awareness regarding the advantages of electroactive polymers over traditional materials such as metals is low, which is hampering the growth of the market. These advantages include ease of fabrication, lower cost of production, and weight savings. “The lack of awareness in Asia Pacific, which is considered to be the most potential region, is a major challenge for global participants. This is further compounded by the lack of technical knowledge about the product and its potential applications in various end-use industries,” says a TMR analyst.
Nevertheless, these polymers are finding applications in Li-Ion battery anodes and new age sound systems. Hence, the soaring demand for sound systems and lithium-ion batteries is creating ample growth opportunities for the market.