Polymethyl methacrylate is a synthetic resin obtained from the polymerization of methyl methacrylate. It is transparent & rigid, and often replaces glass in various products.
The polymethyl methacrylate market will be valued around USD 11 billion by 2020. Its volumes would grow at a CAGR of 6% from 2013 to 2020. In 2020, they are estimated to be 2.9 million tons. This may be attributed to the robust LED TV and flat panel industries, primarily in Asia Pacific – the global electronics hub.
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Other end-users of the polymethyl methacrylate market include automotives, signs & displays, etc. The market will benefit from extensive research in bio-based polymethyl methacrylate. Optical-grade polymethyl methacrylate has multiple applications encompassing medical, solar power, and coatings & emulsions.
The market is classified on the basis of products, applications, and regions. Products are split into pellets, extruded sheets, beads, and cell cast sheet & blocks. Extruded sheets held more than half of the total volumes in 2012. Beads will be the fastest-growing product in the future. They should grow at a CAGR of 7.4% in the next seven years. Beads are used in coatings & emulsions and as additives to other copolymers. Pellets accounted for one-fourth of the overall volumes in 2012.
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Applications of the polymethyl methacrylate market comprise automotives, construction, electronics, signs & displays, and others. Signs & displays contributed over 34% of the market volumes in 2012. Availability of different colors makes polymethyl methacrylate ideal for use in signs. Construction stood second in 2012. However, electronics will undergo the fastest expansion. The robust electronics industry of South Korea, China, and Taiwan will steer this application.
The regional segments cover Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, and Rest of the World (RoW). Asia Pacific, with 65% share, had huge lead over the other regions in terms of volumes in 2012. Low-cost manufacturing and proximity to a large customer base are its main strengths. Europe would recover post recession and grow further.
Chief vendors of the worldwide polymethyl methacrylate market encompass Evonik SA, Mitsubishi Rayon, Chi Mei Corporation, and Altuglas International. The market is highly concentrated. Huge capital outlays and product innovations are some of the entry barriers of players.
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