Global Market for Flexible Foam to Reach $36.9 Billion within Five Year Period

May 01, 2018

WELLESLEY, Mass., May 01, 2018 – A rise in consumer spending in emerging economies, an increasing demand for flexible foam products in the Asia-Pacific region and an expanding furnishings industry in Europe are collectively driving growth in the global market for flexible foam. In a new report, Flexible Foam: Global Markets, BCC Research estimates that this market will be valued at $36.9 billion in 2022. This indicates a modest increase, at the industry was worth $29 billion in 2017, indicating an overall compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.9%.

A preponderance of small-scale producers and comparatively low market shares held by leading players has significantly fragmented the flexible foam market. For example, the top six companies hold less than 25% of the total market share. Low entry barriers, price-based competition and growing exports from small-scale local players to international markets have further fragmented the industry. Key companies include Recticel (Belgium), INOAC Corp. (Japan), Sekisui Chemical Co. Ltd. (Japan), Vita Cellular Foams (UK), Carpenter Co. (U.S.) and Orsa S.r.l. (Italy). In 2016, Recticel held 7.1% of the flexible foam market, the largest production share, followed by INOAC Corp. with 5.0%, and Sekisui Chemical Co. Ltd. with 4.3%.

In the past 10 years, growth in the furnishings industry in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region has opened multiple opportunities for flexible foam-based materials applications. For example, rising disposable income, as well as growing knowledge about the benefits of using foam-based bedding and furnishings products, has created surging demand. The growing penetration of polyurethane-based flexible foam in the furnishings industry stems from its ability to satisfy a wide variety of customer needs such as sealing, filtering, silencing, cushioning, supporting and protecting. The rapid commercialization of customized and semi-finished flexible polyurethane foam-based products in infrastructure, furnishings, consumer goods and transportation has also fueled growth.

Research Highlights

  • By revenue and volume, furnishings held the largest share among end-user segments in 2016, accounting for 64.5% and 66.2%, respectively.
  • The market in the Asia-Pacific region is expected to experience the fastest growth during the forecast period due to increasing demand for flexible foam in many industries including automotive, furnishings and medical applications.
  • By revenue and volume, polyurethane held the largest share among segment types in 2016, accounting for 79.4% and 77.0%, respectively.

“The current demand for different types of flexible foam among end-users varies significantly depending on multiple factors such as specific foam types, cost structure, regional penetration and the level of commercialization,” says Kunal Majumder, BCC Research analyst and author of the report. “In the Asia-Pacific region, the demand for PE and PP flexible foam is relatively low due to their limited use in bedding, mattress, cushioning, upholstery and other applications. Except for Germany, the flexible foam market in most of Western Europe has been negatively impacted by volatile economic conditions, weak domestic demand and a shift in production to Eastern European countries. Ongoing economic turmoil and slow development in the manufacturing sector will continue to dampen growth prospects for the flexible foam market in most of Europe during the forecast period.”

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Flexible Foam: Global Markets( PLS091A )
Publish Date: Apr 2018    

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