Global alcohol ethoxylate market is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period on account of its increasing consumer demand for low-rinse detergents. It was estimated over USD 5,000 million in 2014 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of above 3.0% from 2015 to 2022. Rising technological advancements to increase application scope of the chemical are expected to open new avenues for the product over the next seven years.
Alcohol ethoxylates are primarily employed in manufacturing detergents, personal care & household products, institutional, and industrial cleaning products. Rising demand from end-use industries, rising low-rinse detergents demand, and changing lifestyle of consumers, particularly in Asia Pacific countries including India and China are expected to augment growth over the next seven years.
Growing use of alkyl phenol ethoxylates in textile, leather processing, and agrochemical industry is expected to have a positive impact on industry growth over the forecast period. Personal care and household is the largest application segment for the product comprising over 40% of the global share.
Rising use of the product in shampoos, conditioners, soaps, and house cleaners will propel demand over the next seven years. Substitution of nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPE) by the product in various applications including detergents and cleaning products is expected to have a positive impact on the industry over the forecast period.
Alcohol ethoxylates are biodegradable in nature and, hence, are widely preferred by consumers particularly in Europe and North America. They account for major share of the ethoxylate market on account of their increasing demand from various application segments. Rising R&D focus to introduce eco-friendly products at competitive prices is expected to provide new opportunities over the next seven years.
Prevalence of stringent regulations, particularly in Europe and North America, has forced customers to switch from nonylphenol ethoxylate detergents to alcohol ethoxylate detergents. This is expected to have a positive impact on growth over the next seven years. However, volatility in raw material prices will be a major restraint for the industry over the forecast period.
Geographically, the market is segmented into North America, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific. Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing segment for the product with majority of the demand from personal care products and agriculture segment. Growth in these segments particularly from India, China, and Japan is expected to positively impact the industry over the next seven years.
Europe is the largest market for the product in terms of volume and revenue. It accounted for over 30% of the global share. Increasing demand for environment-friendly products in the household & personal care segment is expected to fuel growth over the next seven years.
The market is highly fragmented on account of presence of numerous players. Major companies present in this industry include Shell Chemicals, BASF SE, Huntsman International LLC, Clariant AG, Stepan Company, Sasol Ltd., The Dow Chemical Company, India Glycols Ltd., Air Products & Chemicals Inc., and Ineos Group Ltd.
Major companies aim to capture market share by increasing manufacturing capacity of the product using natural raw materials such as tallow oil, palm oil, and coconut oil. Growing demand for natural products from various end-use industries is expected to fuel growth over the forecast period.
Companies such as BASF SE and Dow primarily focus on expanding manufacturing capacity to achieve competitive advantage over other producers. Plant capacity expansions along with mergers and acquisitions have been the most commonly used strategies between 2013 and 2014.
Ongoing and technological advancements and product innovation to minimize environmental effect, reduce costs, and offer safe products are expected to generate immense opportunity over the forecast period.
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