Global polymer foam market is expected to witness rapid growth over the next seven years owing to increasing infrastructure spending worldwide. Polymer foam is used in several end-industries including automotive, furniture & bedding, construction and packaging. The product grades majorly find application in furniture and construction industries. Industrialization and urbanization are anticipated to be the major factors driving the global polymer foam market growth over the forecast period. Emerging economies such as China, India, Brazil and Indonesia has been extensively involved in infrastructure development activities which are expected to bolster the polymer foam market growth. The product is also used in automotive industries for manufacturing components such as upholstery, seating and interior panels. Growing bio-based polymer foam demand in automotive industries globally is anticipated to augment the market growth over the forecast period.
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Major polymer foams available commercially include polyamide, microcellular, polyolefinic, polyvinyl chloride, silicon, polyurethane and Styrofoam. Increasing polyurethane foams usage in furniture, carpets and bedding manufacturing is projected to foster the market growth over the foreseeable future. Regulatory bodies such as REACH, U.S. EPA and European Commission imposed stringent regulations on polymer foam to manufacture synthetic products on account of non-biodegradable nature and high carcinogenicity. This is major factor expected to hamper the global polymer foam market over the next seven years. Sensitive petrochemicals prices which in turn impact the polymer foam manufacturing cost are projected to hinder the market growth. Development of bio-based polymers such as bio-based PU, and PVC is anticipated to create immense opportunities for polymer foam market participants over the forecast period.
Based on product type, polyurethane was the largest product segment in 2014 owing large applications in end-use industries such as furniture, carpet and bedding. Polyolefinic foams are expected to be the fastest growing product segment over the next seven years on account of increasing applications in packaging and automotive components including cables, gaskets, headlines and cushioning.
North America was the dominant regional polymer foam market in 2014 owing to huge infrastructure spending in the region. Europe is expected to show considerable growth on account of increasing polymer foam demand in construction industry. Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing regional market over the forecast period on account of increasing automotive industries and infrastructure development in the region. Industrialization and urbanization in emerging economies such as India, China, Indonesia and Malaysia are anticipated to drive the market growth in the region over the forecast period.
Key market players in polymer foam industry include BASF SE, JSP Corp., INEOS Styrenics, Armacell LLC., Woodbridge Foam Partner, Adeplast S.A., Rogers Corp., Carpenter Company, Recticel S.A. and British Vita Foams plc.
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