Horizontal Directional Drilling Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Horizontal Directional Drilling Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Technique (Conventional, Rotary Steerable System), By Parts, By Application, By End Use, And Segment Forecasts, 2019 - 2025

  • Published Date: Feb, 2019
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2018
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-589-2
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2014 - 2017
  • Number of Pages: 145

Report Overview

The global horizontal directional drilling market size was valued at USD 7.37 billion in 2018. It is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 13.2% from 2019 to 2025. Growing emphasis on causing minimal damages to the environment and minimizing inconvenience caused to the public while carrying out infrastructure projects are projected to stir up the demand for HDD services.

The global horizontal directional drilling market has been gaining traction as a result of flourishing telecommunications and oil & gas industries. Soaring need for infrastructure development and utility installations, in line with growing urbanization, is escalating the growth of the overall market worldwide.

U.S. horizontal directional drilling machines market

Horizontal directional drilling is one of the most specialized methods for installing underground conduits with minimal damages to the surrounding ecosystem. Besides, the fact that HDD techniques also ensure more precision as compared to vertical maneuvering methods is also poised to stimulate the growth of the market over the forecast period.

As compared to conventional maneuvering methods, horizontal directional drilling techniques require fewer boreholes to be drilled. In other words, HDD machines can install multiple pipes through a single surface location, which means the surface area of land to be drilled is reduced. This sustainable construction method also requires a smaller set-up space. This ability renders it ideal for congested public areas, where projects have to be finished in a short period, keeping the inconvenience caused to the public minimum and trying to avoid traffic congestions.

At the same time, risks associated with conventional drilling methods, such as contamination of groundwater, can also be avoided by adopting advanced trenchless maneuvering technologies. Another attribute of the method is the reliability and efficiency of the horizontal maneuvering technique as compared to other trenchless methods. Horizontal directional drilling is preferred over auger boring and micro tunneling methods for digging down bores that are less than six inches below the ground, such as smaller water pipes and electricity cables and fiber-optic lines.

Moreover, the availability of maneuvering sensors coupled with advancements in surveying techniques, computer technology, and global positioning systems (GPS) are allowing them to take care of any obstructions encountered during drilling beforehand, thereby making HDD method more convenient. However, horizontal directional drilling methods often incur higher operating costs as compared to the other trenchless techniques.

Technique Insights

Based on the technique, the global HDD machines market has been divided into conventional and rotary steerable systems. Rotary steerable systems dominated the market in 2018. They are likely to retain their dominance through 2025, accounting for over 70.0% of the overall revenue. On the other hand, the conventional segment is expected to exhibit a CAGR of over 2.5% during the forecast period.

Rotary systems are installed with near-bit stabilizers that allow them to drill wells more reliably in lesser time and at comparatively lower costs. Service providers are investing aggressively in upgrading their rotary systems so that they can offer more reliable rotary machines capable of improving borehole quality even under harsh underground conditions.

Parts Insights

Based on machine parts, the market has been segmented into rigs, pipes, bits, reamers, and others. The rigs segment accounted for over 55.0% of the horizontal directional drilling machines market revenue in 2018. The growth of the segment can be attributed to surging demand for efficient rigs in HDD projects for distant pipeline installations.

Rigs are one of the essential equipment in a horizontal directional drilling setup. Hence, they tend to be expensive as compared to other parts of the setup. Moreover, rigs also need to be maintained to ensure a safer and prolonged operational life for them. The reamers segment is estimated to witness significant growth over the forecast period. The ability of reamers to enlarge drilled holes beneath the ground, irrespective of soil conditions, is anticipated to contribute to the growth of the segment.

Rig Type Insights

Rigs have been further segmented into mini, midi, and maxi rigs. While maxi rigs represented over 35.0% of the overall rigs’ revenue share in 2018, midi rigs are projected to register a CAGR of around 4.0% over the forecast period. An increasing number of projects being undertaken by the utility sector and the telecommunications industry are poised to supplement the growth of the midi rigs segment.

Midi horizontal directional drilling rigs are popularly used for installing heavy pipes for gas distribution and laying power and telecommunication lines. The number of infrastructure projects undertaken in cities is growing in line with continued urbanization, thereby triggering the need for midi rings.

Rig Sales Insights

In terms of HDD rig sales, the global horizontal directional drilling market has been further bifurcated into new sales and aftermarket. The new sales segment was valued at over USD 95 million in 2018. It is likely to account for approximately 25.0% of the revenue by 2025.

The aftermarket segment is expected to register a higher CAGR and hold the largest revenue share over the forecast period. Since new HDD rigs are extremely expensive, users prefer hiring HDD contractors or opt for rental HDD rigs that are available at affordable prices, thereby leading to a higher deployment rate of aftermarket HDD rigs.

Application Insights

Based on the application, the global HDD services market has been classified into onshore and offshore. Onshore activities involve the use of horizontal directional drilling techniques for drilling pipes on the land surface, while offshore activities include the use of these techniques for maneuvering pipes at depths below the seabed.

The onshore segment held a revenue share of over 45.0% in 2018. The offshore segment is expected to progress at a CAGR of more than 14.0% over the forecast period as the oil & gas industry continues to undertake more and more offshore projects.

End-use Insights

Horizontal directional drilling services are used in end-use industries such as oil & gas extraction, utility, and telecommunication. Some other end uses are soil mapping, sewage disposal, and geothermal energy distribution.

Global horizontal directional drilling services market

The oil & gas extraction segment represented the leading revenue share of around 35.0% in 2018. It is estimated to retain its position through 2025. On the other hand, spiraling demand for broadband services worldwide is anticipated to spur the growth of the telecommunication segment, which is projected to rise at a CAGR of close to 15.0% during the forecast period. The growth can be attributed to increasing capital spending to roll out newer broadband and communication networks that can support 4G and 5G generations of cellular network technology.

Regional Insights

North America dominated the global market in 2018 with the highest revenue share of over 35.0%. Owing to the growing number of oil & gas, utility construction, and infrastructure development projects in the region, it is poised to lead the global market throughout the forecast period.

The market for HDD machines is likely to experience robust growth in the Asia Pacific over the coming years as vendors based in China are offering these machines at comparatively lower prices. In the case of HDD services, the region is expected to exhibit substantial growth over the same period as providers of telecommunications services are increasingly opting for these services to expand their networks.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The players at the forefront of the global arena include American Augers, Inc.; Ditch Witch; Ellingson Companies; Vermeer Corporation; and The Toro Company. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) focus on striking strategic partnerships and engaging in mergers & acquisitions (M&A) to gain access to the latest technologies as well as to expand their geographical footprint. Key players in the horizontal directional drilling services industry include Laney Directional Drilling, Nabors Industries Ltd., UEA, and Herrenknecht AG.

Horizontal Directional Drilling Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2020

USD 9.48 billion

Revenue forecast in 2025

USD 17.6 billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 13.2% from 2019 to 2025

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2014 - 2017

Forecast period

2019 - 2025

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million and CAGR from 2019 to 2025

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Machines- technique, machine parts, region and Services- application, end-use, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Latin America; MEA

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; U.K.; Germany; China; India; Japan; Brazil; Mexico; Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; U.A.E.; Kuwait.

Key companies profiled

American Augers, Inc.; Ditch Witch; Ellingson Companies; Vermeer Corporation; The Toro Company

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at the global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2014 to 2025. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global horizontal directional drilling (HDD) market report based on machines into technique, machine parts, and region and based on services into the application, end-use, and region:

A) HDD Machines Market

  • Technique Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Conventional

    • Rotary steerable system

  • Parts Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Rigs

      • Type

        • Mini

        • Midi

        • Maxi

      • Sales

        • New sales

        • Aftermarket

    • Pipes

    • Bits

    • Reamers

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • North America

      • The U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

    • Middle East & Africa

      • KSA

      • U.A.E.

      • Kuwait

B) HDD Services Market

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Onshore

    • Offshore

  • End-use Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Oil & gas excavation

    • Utility

    • Telecommunication

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • North America

      • The U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

    • Middle East & Africa

      • KSA

      • U.A.E.

      • Kuwait

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