Low Profile Additives (LPA) Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Low Profile Additives (LPA) Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (PVA, PMMA, PS, HDPE), By Application (SMC/BMC, Pultrusion, Resin Transfer Molding), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2018 - 2025

  • Published Date: Feb, 2018
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2016
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-240-2
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2014 - 2016
  • Number of Pages: 100

Industry Insights

The global low profile additives (LPA) market size was valued at USD 914.0 million in 2016. Rising demand for low shrinkage and surface finished products from end-use industries such as automotive and construction is expected to drive the market over the forecast period. End-use industries including aeronautics, packaging, electronics, and medical are increasingly using plastics owing to soaring demand for lightweight materials and low energy consumption. Rising use of LPA for improving the quality of sheet, bulk, and blow-molded products is likely to drive demand over the coming years.

U.S. low profile additives market

The growing global construction sector is likely to drive the demand for low profile additives over the coming years. Low profile additives in pultrusion offer properties such as dimensional stability, electrical insulation, and corrosion resistance to the final product. These benefits are expected to propel demand over the forecast period.

LPAs are mixed with unsaturated polyester resin to prevent shrinkage during polymerization. Unsaturated polyester resins and vinyl resins include polyester, polymethyl methacrylate, polyurethanes, polyesters, polyvinyl acetate, polyglycols, and their various copolymers, which are used in the production of low profile additives.

The LPA market is expected to be restrained by fluctuating raw materials prices due to volatile global oil prices. Increasing use of polymers in industries such as packaging, pharmaceuticals, transportation, building and construction, automotive, and household items is also expected to weaken availability of raw material, thereby hampering market growth.

Product Insights

Key low profile additives include polyvinyl acetate (PVA), polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), polystyrene (PS), and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). These are added during the formulation of glass or polyester composites to avoid shrinkage and improve surface finish. Polyvinyl acetate accounted for a revenue share of 38.0% globally in 2016.

The growing global automotive industry is expected to be a major factor driving the PVA low profile additives segment. Increasing application of polyvinyl acetate LPA in BMC car reflector lamps due to its advantageous properties such as low shrinkage and smooth surface is expected to drive market demand over the forecast period.

Polystyrene (PS) is generally used for hard and brittle applications. Polystyrene LPA is likely to witness high demand over the forecast period due to its low cost. Growing demand from the construction industry and SMC and BMC applications is expected to drive this segment. High-density polyethylene (HDPE) has good processing ability and mechanical properties, which, in turn, is likely to increase its application in compounding processes. Rising demand for desired quality and shaped products is expected to drive the demand for high-density polyethylene LPA over the forecast period. HDPE accounted for a volume share of 15.3% in 2016.

Application Insights

Sheet and bulk molding compounds (SMC/BMC) together accounted for a market share of 58.7%, in terms of revenue, in 2016. The application is gaining widespread acknowledgment as its use helps in reducing weight and increasing fuel efficiency. LPA is a necessary ingredient in resin mixture during SMC/BMC processes as it helps in improving surface smoothness and controlling shrinkage resulting from molding the finished part.

The use of fiber reinforced unsaturated polymer resin composites in the form of SMC as well as BMC preforms is expected to register the fastest growth in Asia Pacific due to rising demand from countries such as China, Japan, and India. The growth of the automotive industry in the region is likely to have a direct impact on the SMC/BMC market as these are increasingly used in automotive body panels, truck components, and semi-structural parts.

Global low profile additives market

Resin transfer molding (RTM) accounted for a volume share of 12.2% in 2016 as it is one of the few low temperature and pressure molding techniques currently available in the market. It is gaining widespread attention owing to its low cost and convenient operating. The resin transfer molding process is expected to garner much attention in the coming years, particularly to eliminate voids and enhance fiber/resin wet-out.

Pultrusion is one of the methods used for fabrication of composites. The method is essentially deployed when dealing with a high-volume production process for composite profiles. In the automotive industry, pultrusion is used for production of structural and complex vehicular parts with enhanced stiffness, rigidity, and lightness.

Regional Insights

Asia Pacific was the largest market for low profile additives, accounting for a revenue share of 56.6% in 2016. The region is also likely to display the highest CAGR over the forecast period. Increasing demand for SMC and BMC composite solutions due to their excellent features such as high strength and stiffness, lower weight, low emission, superior electrical performance, and high thermal resistance is likely to augment the regional market growth.

U.S. dominated the North America LPA market with a revenue share of 87.2% in 2016. Demand for sheet-molded parts is witnessing an increase due to their application in outer shells of passenger vehicles and advantageous properties such as lightweight and ease of production. Moreover, presence of a large number of manufacturers and raw material suppliers in the region is expected to drive the market low profile additives in North America over the coming years.

Europe is also a major market for LPA. A growing automotive industry in the region is expected to drive the demand for SMC and BMC composites over the coming years. For instance, low profile Class A SMC panels are used along with steel or aluminum in a hybrid design. BMC is mainly used for headlamp reflectors and appliances, which requires good cosmetic and high heat performance. Such factors are likely to drive the demand for LPA in SMC and BMC applications in Europe over the forecast period.

Need for high-performance thermoplastics in the automotive industry to reduce overall vehicular weight and gain fuel efficiency is also expected to have a positive influence on market growth. However, Brazil’s automotive industry has been retreating since the government ended tax incentives. The auto industry is one of the sectors most affected by the economic downturn in Brazil, which has adversely affected plastics processors serving the end-market.

Low Profile Additives Market Share Insights

Companies such as Arkema Group, PolyOne Corporation, Reichhold, LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V., and Wacker Chemie AG have vast distribution channels and extensive production capacities across the globe. Manufacturers have been involved in new product development and expansion strategies to sustain rising competition. For instance, Wacker Chemie AG developed an LPA to be used in processes at room temperature.

Mergers and acquisitions are another key strategy adopted by manufacturers in an attempt to strengthen their market position. Companies are looking to expand their existing manufacturing facilities to increase their annual production capacities. Furthermore, companies are trying to cater to a wider spectrum of applications such as renewable energy, construction, healthcare, and automotive without affecting the environment.

Report Scope

Attribute

Details

Base year for estimation

2016

Actual estimates/Historical data

2014 - 2016

Forecast period

2017 - 2025

Market representation                                                  

Volume in kilotons, revenue in USD million, and CAGR from 2017 to 2025

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Central & South America, Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S., Germany, U.K., China, Japan, Brazil

Report coverage              

Revenue forecast, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels, and provides an analysis of latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2014 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global low profile additives market report on the basis of product, application, and region:

  • Product Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Polyvinyl acetate

    • Polymethyl methacrylate

    • Polystyrene

    • High-density polyethylene

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

    • Sheet & bulk molding compounds

    • Pultrusion

    • Resin transfer molding

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

    • North America

      • U.S.

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • Japan

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

Key questions answered by the report
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