Radiation cured products are obtained by the process of radiation curing that can be modulated to fit in a broad range of applications. Key radiation cured products include coatings, inks and adhesives. These coatings, inks and adhesives find further applications in end-user industries such as wood, paper, glass, metal etc. The revenue generated by the global RCP market was USD 4,938.5 million in 2012. This market is expected to reach USD 7,930.1 million by 2019 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 7.0% from 2013 to 2019.
Radiation cured coatings accounted for the largest share of the Radiation Cured Products market in terms of both volume and revenue in 2012. Radiation cured inks was the second largest product segment of radiation cured products followed by radiation cured adhesives. The RCP industry exhibits high degree of backward integration as majority of RCP producers are also engaged in the production of its feedstock materials. This backward integration gives these participants a distinctive competitive advantage in terms of raw material procurement and supply.
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The radiation curing process is instantaneous and requires very less time as compared to the conventional thermal curing process, hence it is used for a wide range of applications. Global demand of RCP is mainly driven by the environmental compliance of this technology and increase in the infrastructure activities that have led to a rise in demand for wood coatings. Radcure technology produces very little to no waste and the waste so produced is disposed of as ordinary waste. The process requires less space, time and energy as compared to other curing technologies. Large market share and steady growth rate are a result of the instant curing times and improved productivity offered by radcure coatings that help to increase the cost effectiveness of the process.
Radiation cured inks is the other important product type produced by the radiation curing process. The transition towards energy cured inks and high value digital inks are expected to drive the market of radcure inks in the near future. The major end users of radcure inks are packaging and printing industries. The growth of RCP market is likely to be restricted by factors such as rising raw material prices. The raw materials used for making RCP are different oligomers and monomers which are crude oil derivatives. The crude oil market is always fluctuating and is uncertain and therefore involves a high price and supply instability.
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Asia-Pacific and Europe were the major markets for RCP in 2012. With around 40% share in total demand, Asia-Pacific was the largest regional market for RCP in 2012. Leading RCP manufacturers have concentrated on capacity expansion in Asia Pacific to increase their yields and revenues and cater to the increasing demand. The RCP market witnessed a significant decline in demand due to the global economic downturn during 2008 and 2009. However, it has witnessed steady rise in demand since 2010 due to the uptrend in end-user industries following revival of the global economy.
In the recent past, industry participants have shifted their focus on capacity expansion to increase production capacities of their respective facilities. Looking into the growth trends in the end user industries such as wood coatings, packaging and textiles, RCP manufacturers are focused on capacity expansion. Some of the key market participants operating in the RCP market include Ashland Inc., BASF SE, Bayer MaterialScience, DIC Corporation, Cytech Industries etc.
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