However, the market for specialty ingredients in home and fabric care formulations remains dynamic, fuelled by the need to minimise risks from bacteria and germs, to reduce the time and effort required for household chores, and to further improve the quality of life while addressing the environmental concerns of consumers.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (chemicals.frost.com), Strategic Analysis of the Home and Fabric Care Specialty Ingredients Markets in Europe, shows that this market generated EUR 615.8 million in revenues in 2008 and estimates it to reach EUR 706.2 million in 2015. The following segments are covered in this research: specialty surfactants, functional polymers, fabric enhancers, active ingredients and rheology modifiers in home and fabric care as well as hard surface cleaners, car interior and upholstery cleaners, fabric care, furniture, shoe & leather polishes and dishwashing products.
"The advent of the 'green' consumer who prefers natural products that are derived from renewable or recycled sources, have an environmentally friendly profile in terms of toxicity and are safe to use is the catalytic driving force," notes Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst, Dr. Leonidas Dokos. "The growing demand for more efficient and technically novel chemicals to assist in daily home and fabric care tasks has rejuvenated this mature market as producers focus on addressing the evolving demands of consumers."
Specialty ingredients with an improved environmental profile are pulling the market and influencing demand. At the same time, there is a market push in the form of European Directives, with regulators increasingly insisting on reduced toxicity and enhanced biodegradation of such products.
Increasing consumption in emerging European markets will further assist in the growth of home and fabric care specialty ingredients, while in the developed markets of Western Europe, green products and innovation are crucial. Also important to growth is the fact that companies active in the market are focusing on reducing the average product development time as product life cycles are being shortened.
However, sustaining capital and resource investment in research and development in order to maintain healthy pipelines of innovative products, while at the same time controlling the cost, will be the key challenge for suppliers to this market. Moreover, the current economic crisis is eating into consumer products demand, particularly in Europe and the United States, temporarily highlighting consumer price consciousness.
"In 2008 the chemicals sector was the only one among the top 15 sectors in the world showing an investment decrease in research and development of 1.3 per cent, while the household goods sector experienced a decrease in research and development investment of 6.1 per cent," explains Dr. Dokos. "When combined with plant shutdowns, recently introduced legislative frameworks that increase costs (such as REACH) and the ongoing economic uncertainty, it becomes clear that the suppliers to the home and fabric care industry are facing a challenging environment."
Strategic acquisitions, focus on key market segments, promotion of product differentiation and green innovation are critical in overcoming market challenges and addressing evolving market and consumer needs. However, the completion of strategic acquisitions can only be realised by market participants with strong cash flows.
"Some of the leading chemicals companies have opted for strategic acquisitions continuing the consolidation trend, while others have focused on strategic alliances," says Dr. Dokos. "However, the key to growth remains innovation and addressing the needs of the 'green' consumer without compromising the technical performance of products."
Strategic Analysis of the Home and Fabric Care Specialty Ingredients Markets in Europe is part of the Chemicals & Materials Growth Partnership Services programme, which also includes research in the following markets: U.S. Polymers in Personal Care Market (2008), U.S. Emulsifiers in Personal Care Market (2008), European Markets for Actives Ingredients in Skin Care (2008) and, European Vitamins in Personal Care Markets (2008). All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
If you are interested in a virtual brochure, which provides a brief synopsis of the research and a table of contents, please email Monika Kwiecinska, Corporate Communications, at monika.kwiecinska[.]frost.com, with your full name, company name, title, telephone number, company email address, company website, city, state and country. Upon receipt of the above information, a brief brochure will be emailed to you.
Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, enables clients to accelerate growth and achieve best in class positions in growth, innovation and leadership. The company's Growth Partnership Service provides the CEO and the CEO's Growth Team with disciplined research and best practice models to drive the generation, evaluation, and implementation of powerful growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan leverages over 45 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from more than 35 offices on six continents.
Strategic Analysis of the Home and Fabric Care Specialty Ingredients Markets in Europe / M382