Specialty Fibers: Technologies and Global Markets
The global market for specialty fibers was 412 million pounds in the year 2010. This market increased to 437 million pounds in 2011, and is expected to grow to 634 million pounds by 2016, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.7% for the five year period 2011 to 2016.
The scope of this report is comprehensive, covering the present status of and future prospects for specialty fibers and products in North America. As defined in this report, North America includes the United States and Canada. Basically, the scope of the report includes diverse segments such as sporting goods, light vehicles, aircraft/aerospace, and various industrial applications. Fibers covered include carbon, aramid, partially oxidized polyacrylonitrile, polybenzimidazole, and other specialty fibers (metal matrix composite, polyphenylene sulfide, boron, carbon-silicon carbide, and other advanced fibers).
These are analyzed in detail as are technology developments, market conditions and opportunities, and 5-year forecasts. The role of new technologies is reviewed in this comprehensive report. This BCC Research study analyzes the current North American market in detail and identifies the most promising market opportunities for the next 5 years. The markets in Western Europe, Japan, China, and other global markets are covered as well.
In order to generate the information necessary to construct a reasonable future market for specialty fibers, it is necessary to undertake an examination of the advantages and disadvantages of the various types of materials and technologies. In addition to various fiber types, this examination also covers the many issues concerning the merits and future prospects of the business, including corporate strategies, technologies, and the means for providing these products and service offerings. It also covers in detail the regulatory and economic issues that so many regard as critical to the industry’s current state of change. The report provides a review of the specialty fibers industry and its structure, and the many companies involved in providing these materials and technologies. The competitive position of the main players in the market and the strategic options they face are also discussed, as well as such competitive factors as marketing, distribution, and operations.
In this report, the term revenue is equivalent to, and is used interchangeably with the terms purchases, demand, and sales. All growth rates mentioned in the tables and in the text are based on the compound annual rate of growth from 2011 through the year 2016. In most cases, the actual quantity or volume (in pounds) is measured, and the calculated growth rates are easy to comprehend. Because current dollar measures are used to measure revenues, these growth rates reflect the growth in volume or real growth, including the effects of price changes and changes in product/service mix. The sum of the components in tables may not add to the total due to independent rounding. Historical data from 2007 through 2011 are presented in the tables in this report. Data prior to 2007 are available.
The research methodology was qualitative in nature and employed a triangulating approach, which aids validity. The research involved two stages, one involving secondary research and the other primary research.
Initially, a patent search and analysis was conducted. This strategy identified companies and market applications and was the initiating force in research direction. Next, a comprehensive and exhaustive search of the literature on carbon, aramid, and other specialty fibers was conducted. These secondary sources included automotive and related journals and related books, trade literature, marketing literature, other product/promotional literature, annual reports, security analyst reports, and other publications.
In a second phase, a series of semistructured interviews were conducted with marketing executives, engineers, business unit managers, design engineers, and other personnel at the specialty fiber companies. Other sources include academics, technology and materials suppliers, technical experts, trade association officials, government officials, and consulting companies. These were a rich source of data. Subsequent analysis of the documents and interview notes was iterative.
Calvin Swift as over 20 years’ experience in competitive intelligence and industrial market research, planning, and marketing at major corporations, market research consultancies and think tanks. He advises and briefs management about economic and industry conditions, strategic developments, and the effects of proposed developments in the light vehicle industry as well as in plastics, metals, and other materials. The author has employed scenario analysis to investigate and research the future of industry to identify the impact of globalization, consolidation, demographics, changing industry structure, and technological innovation. His particular interest lies in the interaction of strategy, economic and industry developments, and innovation. He holds a BA and a master’s degree in industrial economics, and has completed other studies in business administration.
The global market for specialty fibers increased from $5 billion in 2006 to an estimated $5.6 billion by the end of 2007. It should reach $9.2 billion by 2012, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.5%.
Specialty fibers markets in the developed nations of North America, Western Europe and Japan account for 76% of the global total.
Aramid fibers are the most widely used specialty fibers (250 million pounds in 2007), followed by carbon fibers (81 million pounds in 2007).