The flexible substrates market is projected to grow from USD 402.9 million in 2018 to USD 775.8 million by 2023, at a CAGR of 14.0 % during the forecast period. Flexible substrates have the ability to bend while sustaining its other properties. They remain intact while being compressed, stretched, or twisted. Flexible substrates have properties such as thermal stability, dimensional stability, low coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE), outstanding solvent resistance, and decent barrier properties for moisture and gases. They are mainly used in electronics applications such as displays and printed circuit boards.
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Increasing use of flexible substrates in consumer electronics is fueling the growth of the flexible substrates market across the globe. Key companies operating in the market have adopted various inorganic and organic growth strategies such as acquisitions, new product launches, expansions, and joint ventures to strengthen their foothold in the flexible substrates market. DuPont Teijin Films (US), Teijin (Japan), Schott (Germany), Corning (US), Polyonics (US), Kolon Industries (South Korea), and Heraeus (Germany) are some of the leading players operating in the flexible substrates market.
New product launches and expansions were the key growth strategies adopted by the leading players of the flexible substrates market between 2015 and 2017 to enhance their business prospects, increase their global reach, and widen their distribution networks.
Corning (US) develops digital flexible substrates for use in displays. The company manufactures and supplies flexible glass substrates. In December 2015, the company invested USD 1.3 billion in a Gen 10.5 glass manufacturing facility in Hefei, China. In addition, the company entered into a long-term agreement with BOE Technology Group Co. Ltd (BOE), wherein BOE committed to buying Gen 10.5 glass substrates and Gen 8.5 glass substrates. In June 2015, the company launched Corning EAGLE XG Slim glass of 0.4mm thickness in sizes up to Gen 8.5. It provides improved performance and greater reliability for curved TV panels. It also aids in the manufacturing of thinner and lighter large-size displays.
Polyonics (US) is one of the leading innovation-driven company which develops innovative flexible substrates. In August 2016, the company introduced new types of antistatic films, which provided protection for static sensitive components. These are available in 25 and 50 µm versions. These films have high tensile, tear, and impact and abrasion resistance; are immune to a broad array of chemicals; and are stable at high temperatures.
Nippon Electric Glass (Japan) and American Semiconductor (US) are some of the other manufacturers of flexible substrates.
The flexible substrates market is projected to reach USD 775.8 million by 2023, at a CAGR 14.0 % between 2018 and 2023. The growth of the flexible substrates market across the globe can be attributed to the increased use of these substrates in consumer electronics. Moreover, the increasing number of solar energy projects being carried out in emerging economies such as India, China, Brazil, etc., is also expected to fuel the growth of the flexible substrates market across the globe. The increased demand for flexible substrates used in medical & healthcare applications is also expected to fuel the consumption of flexible substrates during the forecast period.
Based on type, the flexible substrates market has been segmented into plastic, glass, and metal. The plastic type segment accounted for the largest share of the flexible substrates market in 2018. The large share of this segment can be attributed to the increased use of flexible substrates in printed circuit board application. Plastic substrates are highly suitable for applications demanding a high degree of transparency, bendability, and emissive properties. Plastic materials provide a realistic compromise between physical, chemical, and optical properties.
Based on application, the flexible substrates market has been segmented into consumer electronics, solar energy, medical & healthcare, and aerospace & defense. The consumer electronics application segment accounted for the largest share of the flexible substrates market in 2018. The solar energy segment is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. In the consumer electronics application, flexible substrates are used in the production of flexible displays and sensors. Flexible displays are also used in smartphones, smart wearables, and television applications. Increasing use of flexible substrates in solar modules is expected to drive the growth of the flexible substrates market across the globe.
The Asia Pacific flexible substrates market is projected to grow at the highest CAGR between 2018 and 2023. The growth of the flexible substrates market in the Asia Pacific region is primarily driven by the increasing production of consumer electronics in the region. China is projected to be one of the high growth potential markets for flexible substrates in the Asia Pacific region. The growth of the Chinese flexible substrates market can be attributed to the increased consumer electronics production across the country, thereby resulting in an increased demand for flexible substrates.
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