Functional Films Market 2017–2027
Functional films are polymer sheets that are used to improve the properties of the fragile substrate. They are widely used across solar cells and the automotive industry for enhancing the functional properties of the automotive component. These films can be classified into adhesive films, conductive films, optical films, and water-soluble films. In the healthcare industry, functional play a very important role in the development of various high-quality medical products. These films are protective, heat &chemical resistant, transparent, durable, and flexible in nature. Therefore, these films are gaining huge demand across the various end-user industry due to their excellent chemical and physical properties.
The global functional films market is estimated to surpass US$ 37 billion by the end of 2027, in terms of revenue, growing at CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period (2019 to 2027).
Increasing installation of solar panel especially in the U.S country is projected to propel the market growth of the functional film. According to the Solstice, the U.S. had 64.2 GW of installed solar–enough to power 12.3 million American homes by the end of 2018. Solar energy accounts for 1.6% of total U.S. electricity generation. Therefore, the growing solar cell market is projected to propel the growth of the functional film market.
According to the World packaging, the world packaging market amounted to US$851 billion in 2017, an increase of 2.8% compared to 2016 at constant prices, and it is set to reach US$876 billion in 2018, based on the annual growth of 2.9%. The functional films are widely used in the packaging industry due to their various advantages such as lightweight as compared to other packaging materials, abrasion-resistant, durable, and flexible. Hence, the growing packaging industry is augmenting the market growth.
Regionally, Asia-Pacific dominated the global functional films market in 2018, reporting 67% market share in terms of revenue, followed by North America and Europe, respectively.
Figure 1. Global Functional Films Market, Revenue Share (%), By Region, 2018
Fluctuating prices of raw materials to produce functional films are projected to hamper the market growth of the functional film. The volatile prices of raw materials directly impact the supply of the product which affects the manufacturing process or sales of functional films. This is expected to negatively affect the growth of the functional film over the forecast timeframe.
Lack of awareness regarding the benefits of functional film across developing and underdeveloped countries is expected to restraint the market growth over the forecast period. Moreover, the availability of substitutes such as high-performance film is also expected to restraint the market growth of the functional film.
The rising production of polymers around the globe is projected to offer numerous growth opportunities to the market of functional films. According to the World plastic production, Plastics production ramped up from 1.5 Million Ton in 1950 to approximately 322 Milion tons in 2015. In 2015 global plastic production grew by 3.4% compared to 2014. Hence, such a rise in plastic production will favor market growth over the forecast period.
Increasing production of consumer electronic especially across the Asia Pacific region is expected to fuel the market growth of the functional film. The functional film is widely used in the manufacturing of smartphones and tablets. According to the Economic Times, the appliances and consumer electronics industry is projected to double to US$ 19.9 billion by 2024-25. The industry had a total market size of US$ 10.3 billion in 2018-19, in which US$ 4.3 billion was contributed from domestic manufacturing.
Figure 2. Global Functional Films Market – Opportunity Analysis
The growing trend of flexible display for making the product lightweight, durable, and reducing energy consumption is a major trend that has been observed in the market. For instance, in July 2018, China's Huawei Technologies, the world's third-largest smartphone maker, has announced to roll out the first foldable handset with a flexible screen ahead of its bigger rival Samsung Electronics, according to analysts and industry sources familiar with the matter.
Increasing sales and demand for the electric vehicle due to growing concerns over environmental pollution is expected to propel the market growth of the functional film. According to the data by electric vehicle sales in April 2019, the global EV sales totaled about 2.1 million for 2018, an increase of 64% compared to the total sold in 2017. 2018 EV sales increased by 79% in the U.S., 78% in China, and 34% in Europe as compared to 2017.
Figure 3. Global Functional Films Market, Revenue Share (%), By Product Type, in 2018
On the basis of product type, in 2018, optical accounted the largest market share of 44% in terms of revenue, followed by adhesive and conductive, respectively.
Key players operating in the global functional films market are 3M, Toray Industries, Inc., Nagase & Co. Ltd., Eastman Chemical Company, and Tatsuta Electric Wire & Cable Co., Ltd.