In this market research report, Technavio covers the market outlook and growth prospects of the global flexible foam market for 2017-2021. The market is further categorized into three major application segments, which include furniture and bedding, transportation and packaging. The furniture and bedding segment dominated the market with more than 41% of the overall market share in 2016.
“The global flexible foams market is likely to grow at a significant rate during the forecast period due to the increasing demand for lightweight vehicles from the transportation industry such as automotive, railway, and aerospace. These foams are increasingly used in packaging applications for their shock absorption and lightweight properties,” says Chandrakumar Badala Jaganathan, a lead plastics, polymers, and elastomers research expert from Technavio.
Technavio’s research analysts segment the global flexible foam market into the following regions:
- North America
Flexible foams market in APAC
Flexible foam is largely used for mattresses and cushions. High population growth in APAC is leading to high demand for bedding and furnishing. Urbanization and industrialization along with the need for energy-efficient buildings are enhancing the need for insulation. Energy efficiency provided by insulation is one of the primary drivers for market growth in APAC.
Also, there is a high demand for televisions, refrigerators, and air conditioners from APAC countries such as China, Cambodia, and Vietnam, which is expected to fuel the market for flexible foam in the next five years.
“The flexible foams market in APAC is likely to grow at the fastest CAGR in comparison with the other geographical segments due to the increased consumption of flexible foams in the rapidly growing automotive industry in the emerging economies, especially India,” says Chandrakumar.
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Flexible foams market in Europe
The demand for flexible foam is growing in Western Europe driven by the major end-user industries such as bedding and furniture, building and construction, transportation, electronics, and packaging. The European construction sector is rebounding after the economic downturn during the 2008-2009 recession. France, Germany, the UK, Spain, and Italy were among the ten largest construction markets in Western Europe in 2015. The demand for flexible foams from thermal insulation panels in the construction sector was high from these countries.
The bedding and furniture industry in Europe is witnessing rapid growth in the demand for foam mattresses over spring ones. These factors are propelling the demand for flexible foams in the region and will continue to do the same during the forecast period.
Flexible foams market in North America
The automotive sector in North America is growing steadily. Automobile manufacturers are focusing on lightweight fuel-efficient vehicles. Increasing automotive production in this region is expected to impel the market for flexible foams.
Rising concerns regarding high electricity cost, greenhouse emissions, and subsequent loss of energy have facilitated the rise of energy-efficient residential and commercial buildings. High demand for flexible foams in North America is anticipated to be primarily driven by the growing construction industry across the US, Canada, and Mexico. The refrigeration market in North America is also witnessing increasing demand for flexible foams in the region.
Flexible foams market in ROW
ROW includes countries in the South and Central America, the Middle East, and Africa. The flexible foams market in this region is growing steadily due to the increase in construction activities, growth in automobile production, and availability of cheap land, labor, and resources.
In Central and South America, the availability of cheap labor, low transportation costs, and less stringent government regulations are attracting original equipment manufacturers from other regions to establish manufacturing units in the region. This will further escalate the demand for flexible foams in Central and South America during the forecast period.
The top vendors in the global flexible foam market as highlighted in this market research analysis are:
- Dow Chemical
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