Key Market Overview:
Phenol Market size was valued at USD 24.3 Billion in 2021, registering a CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period (2022-2030), and the market is projected to be worth USD 37.06 Billion by 2030.
Phenol is a white solid crystalline compound that is aromatic in nature with a chemical formula C6H5OH. It is an aromatic hydrocarbon, comprising a ring structure made up of alternating single and double bonds and at least one benzene ring to which a hydroxyl (-OH) functional group is attached. At room temperature, phenol is a solid and has a characteristic chemical smell. There are several different types of phenols, including monohydric phenols, dihydric phenols, and trihydric phenols. These compounds are soluble in both water and alcohol. Phenol has a strong, sweet, tarry odor and is an important raw material in the production of many chemical products. Furthermore, phenol is similar to alcohol but forms stronger hydrogen bonds than alcohol. Hence, more soluble in water than alcohol and has a higher boiling point. Additionally, phenol is also used as a key ingredient in the manufacture of phenolic adhesives, polycarbonates, and epoxy resins. Further, these products provide essential raw materials for a wide range of industries and have numerous applications, including the production of window glazing, plywood, flooring, televisions, computers, household appliances, countertop laminates, sports equipment, and boats.
Moreover, major companies are investing in the expansion of their production capacities to cater to the growing demand for phenol by various end-users. For instance, in August 2022, INEOS Phenol added 1 million tons of production capacity by investing USD 330 million in Mitsui Phenols Singapore Ltd. The investment helped INEOS in supporting its customers more effectively all over the world and further attributed to the development of new markets in Asia.
Additionally, the Asia-Pacific region is expected to be the fastest-growing market for phenol owing to the increasing demand for phenol-based products in various end-use industries such as construction, automotive, electronics, and packaging.
- The expansion of construction and automotive industries, particularly in emerging economies such as China, India, and Southeast Asia, is driving the demand for phenol. Phenol-based products are widely used in the mentioned industries owing to unique properties such as excellent chemical resistance, high stability, and good insulation properties.
- The growing adoption of phenolic resins in various applications including laminates, particleboard, medium-density fiberboard (MDF), and insulation materials is also propelling the demand for the product. Further, the demand for phenolic resins is also driven by the growing popularity of eco-friendly and sustainable building materials, as the resins are made up of renewable resources and are biodegradable in nature.
Cresols and xylenols having similar chemical and physical properties are substitutes for phenol since they are cheaper and easier to produce, making them more attractive to customers. Moreover, cresols and xylenols are used as substitutes for phenol in certain applications, such as in the production of resins, plastics, and other chemicals. Thus, the availability of substitute products is restraining the growth of the phenol market.
The growing demand for bio-based products is expected to drive the growth of the bio-based phenol market, as consumers are becoming more environmentally conscious and seeking eco-friendly alternatives to conventional petrochemical-based products. Moreover, technological advancements in the production of phenol are creating new growth opportunities, enabling manufacturers to manufacture the product more efficiently and cost-effectively.
Phenol Report Coverage:
|Report Attributes||Report Details|
|Market Size in 2030 (USD Billion)||37.06|
|By Type||Monohydric Phenols, Dihydric Phenols, and Trihydric Phenols|
|By Manufacturing Process||Coal Tar Process, Cumene Process, Dow Process, Bio-based Process, and Others.|
|By End-Use||Construction and Furniture, Automotive, Textile, Household/Furniture Industries, Packaging, Pharmaceuticals, Electrical & Electronics, and Others.|
|By Geography||North America, Europe
Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East, & Africa
|Key Players||SABIC, Dow Chemical, LyondellBasell, Lanxess, China National Chemical Corporation, BASF SE, Royal Dutch Shell, Mitsubishi Chemical, INEOS, LG Chem, and Kumho P&B Chemicals|
The type segment is classified into monohydric phenols, dihydric phenols, and trihydric phenols. Monohydric phenols are the dominating segment, holding the largest share of the global phenol market. Monohydric phenols are also known as simple phenols comprising one hydroxyl group (-OH) in their molecular structure. Monohydric phenols are used in a wide range of applications which include the production of resins, plasticizers, antiseptics, and other chemicals. The above-mentioned factors are driving the market growth of the segment.
The dihydric phenols segment is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period. The increasing demand for environmentally friendly and safer alternatives to BPA such as bisphenol S (BPS) and bisphenol F (BPF) to produce polycarbonates, epoxy resins, and other specialty chemicals is expected to drive the market growth of the segment. Additionally, the demand for dihydric phenols is anticipated to be driven by the growth of the electronics, construction, and packaging industries, which use these chemicals in the manufacture of their products.
By Manufacturing Process
The manufacturing process segment is categorized into coal tar process, cumene process, dow process, bio-based process, and others. The cumene process is the dominating segment, accounting for the largest share of the global phenol market. The process involves the reaction of benzene and propylene to produce end products such as phenol and acetone. The reaction is carried out in the presence of an alkylation catalyst, such as sulfuric acid or an ion-exchange resin, in a reactor vessel. Factors such as the high yield of phenol production, and environmentally friendly, and energy-efficient process are driving the market growth of the segment.
The bio-based process is expected to grow at a significant rate during the forecast period. The production of phenol from renewable raw materials, such as biomass, makes the process more environmentally friendly compared to coal tar processes, which rely on non-renewable fossil fuels. This is a key factor expected to drive the market growth of the segment in the future.
The end-user segment is divided into construction and furniture, automotive, textile, household/furniture industries, packaging, pharmaceuticals, electrical & electronics, and others. The electrical and electronics industry is the dominating segment and contributes the largest share of the global phenol market. The increasing application of phenol in the production of electrical equipment, circuit boards, and insulating materials is a major factor driving the market growth of the segment.
The construction & furniture segment is anticipated to grow at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period. Owing to the rising application of phenol in the production of building materials such as phenol-formaldehyde resins, the segment is expected to grow at a significant rate over the forecast period. Phenol-formaldehyde resins are further used as adhesives for wood products such as plywood, particleboard, and fiberboard. The mentioned factors are expected to drive the market growth of the segment during the projected timeframe.
The regions include Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, Latin America, and Middle East, and Africa, Asia-Pacific is the dominant segment and holds a significant share of the market. The presence of major producers and consumers of phenol in countries such as China, India, and South Korea is a key factor driving the region growth. Furthermore, the Asia-Pacific region also consists of many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that produce and use phenols. Along with the increasing demand for phenols in various applications, the availability of raw materials, and supportive government policies are bolstering the market growth of phenols across the region.
North America is anticipated to grow at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period. The growing construction and electrical & electronics industry across the region is expected to enhance the demand for phenol, driving market growth in the future.
Phenol Market Competitive Landscape:
The market is highly competitive with the presence of various companies operating in the industry. The companies are focusing on growth strategies such as mergers & acquisitions, collaborations, partnerships, and capacity expansions to increase market share and expand operations globally. The competitive landscape has been analyzed and further, the report provides an analysis of the market’s competitive landscape, including company profiles of the major players operating in the industry. Key players in the market include:
- Dow Chemical
- Lanxess AG
- China National Chemical Corporation
- BASF SE
- Royal Dutch Shell
- Mitsubishi Chemical
- LG Chem
- Kumho P&B Chemicals
- In July 2022, LG Chem, A South Korea based petrochemical manufacturer announced the export of 4,000 tons of phenol to a German polycarbonate manufacturer in its Chinese & Thai production facilities. The phenol was produced from bio-feedstock including biomass and waste cooking oil.
- In August 2022, INEOS Phenols announced the acquisition of Japanese chemical manufacturer Mitsui Phenols Singapore Ltd from Mitsui Chemicals for a value of USD 330 million. The strategic initiative was aimed to enhance production and supply capabilities and improve the company’s business in Asia.
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