Nonwoven materials and products are fabrics made from cross laid, parallel laid, or randomly laid webs glued with the help of thermoplastic fibers or adhesives under the application of heat and pressure. Nonwoven fabrics have properties such as high absorbency, liquid repellence, softness, resilience, stretch, flame resistance, strength, cushioning, thermal insulation, acoustic insulation, and filtration. Owing to these properties, nonwoven materials and products are being increasingly demanded across industries for diverse applications.
Based on product type, the major segments of the market are polyester, nylon, polypropylene-based materials, and others. The demand for nonwoven materials arises from industries such as healthcare, medical, textile, agriculture, construction, automobile, and paper and packaging. Due to their diverse applications, the global non-woven materials market, which stood at US$28.8 bn in 2012, is expected to reach US$45.4 bn by 2019, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.7% between 2013 and 2019.
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Polypropylene Nonwoven Fabric Segment to Dominate Nonwoven Materials Market
Of the aforementioned product categories, polypropylene nonwoven fabric held the largest share in the market in 2012, trailed by polyester and nylon nonwoven fabrics. The polypropylene segment stood at US$16.4 bn in 2012 and is anticipated to reach US$25.8 bn by the end of 2019. If the figures hold true, the segment will exhibit a 6.7% CAGR from 2013 to 2019. However, the others segment (including bio-component fibers, cellulosics, and nono-fibers) is anticipated to emerge as the most attractive segment in the forthcoming years.
Durable Applications Segment to Exhibit 7.0% CAGR during 2013-2019
Based on application, the durable applications segment dominated the market for non-woven materials and products in 2012. The segment generated a revenue of US$17.7 bn in 2012 and is anticipated to reach US$28.3 bn by the end of 2019, exhibiting a healthy CAGR of 7.0% between 2013 and 2019. The market is also gaining impetus from the rising demand from the disposable applications segment. With the automobile, agriculture, and construction industries exhibiting persistent growth, the demand from the aforementioned application segments of the global nonwoven materials and products market is poised to surge exponentially in the forthcoming years. Additionally, robust demand from the market for medical disposables will also emerge as a key factor aiding the expansion of the global market for nonwoven materials and products.
Asia Pacific Dominates Global Nonwoven Materials and Products Market
Regionally, Asia Pacific holds the largest share in the global nonwoven materials and products market. In the recent past, the market in Asia Pacific was driven by the strong demand from the growing agriculture, medical, and construction sectors, particularly in emerging economies such as India and China. Europe has emerged as the second largest market for nonwoven materials and products, followed by North America and Rest of the World. Since the national markets in the European and North American market have already reached their maturity, enterprises operating in the global arena are likely to explore lucrative opportunities in the Asia Pacific market.
Despite witnessing impressive demand over the last few years, issues pertaining to the fluctuations in raw material prices and saturation in developed nations will hamper the market’s growth to an extent. Nevertheless, leading enterprises such as Freudenberg SE, Du Pont, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Ahlstrom Incorporation, Asahi Kasei Corporation, and Polymer Group Incorporation will capitalize on the opportunities available in the emerging markets to ensure sustainable growth in the near future.