Table of Contents
This report presents historical demand data (2004, 2009 and 2014) plus forecasts (2019 and 2024) by type and application for six world regions and 18 major countries. The study also considers market environment factors, details industry structure, evaluates company market share and profiles 41 global industry players.
World demand to rise 6.6% annually through 2019
Worldwide demand for cast polymers is forecast to increase 6.6 percent per year to 246 million square meters in 2019. Cast polymers are predominantly used in the production of various items installed in buildings, such as countertops, sinks, shower surrounds, shower pans, flooring, and wall cladding. Rising populations and ongoing economic advances throughout much of the world will continue to create the need for large numbers of modern housing units and nonresidential facilities, providing opportunities for surface materials such as cast polymers.
In addition to the favorable macroeconomic trends, cast polymers will benefit from increased market penetration throughout the world in many applications. For example, engineered stone is not only the fastest growing cast polymer in countertops, but also one of the fastest among all countertop surfacing materials. Increases in personal incomes will also provide opportunities, as individuals may have the money to upgrade to moderate to high priced surfacing materials such as solid surface and engineered stone.
Engineered stone to be fastest growing product
Solid surface accounted for 56 percent of worldwide cast polymer sales in 2014. Roughly two-thirds of solid surface materials were sold in the Asia/Pacific region, where they are generally low-cost options. Engineered stone (e.g., engineered quartz and engineered marble) accounted for the second largest share -- roughly 30 percent -- of cast polymer demand in 2014, up from 19 percent in 2004, when it comprised the smallest share. Intense marketing strategies (such as in Australia) highlighting engineered stone’s advantages over natural stone and China’s rapidly increasing output of relatively low-cost versions have promoted its use across the world. Engineered stone is expected to achieve the fastest gains of all cast polymers through 2019. Less expensive, but less durable gel-coated composites, including cultured marble, cultured onyx, and cultured granite, are projected to see more modest gains through 2019.
China, India to offer best market opportunities
The Asia/Pacific region was the largest market for cast polymers in 2014, representing roughly 60 percent of total global demand, up from 38 percent in 2004. An increase in domestic consumption of cast polymer products such as engineered stone flooring has stimulated production of these items in the region. In addition, the region has several low cost manufacturing countries, conducive to the production of cast polymer products that are easily transported across the globe, such as shower pans. Advances for cast polymers in the Asia/Pacific region will be propelled by the continuing development of the large Chinese market, which will register over half of additional world demand through 2019. China’s cast polymer industry continues to expand rapidly, and includes a number of companies that have developed their own versions of engineered stone that sell at a discount over imported versions. India is also expected to see strong gains as it continues to develop its housing and nonresidential sectors, promoting the domestic production of various building products such as countertops and sinks. India, for example, has increased its production of engineered stone sinks sixfold over the 2004 to 2014 period, designated for both the export and domestic markets.
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