Fluorosurfactants are a type of coating additive that improves qualities like wetting, leveling, regulating foam, and thermal stability, as well as providing low surface tensions in coating systems. Fluorosurfactants work as multifunctional additives to simplify formulations for paints and coatings, especially those formulated with low- or no-VOC chemistry. Fluorosurfactants are preferred over conventional hydrocarbon surfactants in paint and coating applications because of their superior wetting and leveling capabilities. As a result, its adoption is growing in the paint and coatings industry. Fluorosurfactants Market size is forecast to reach US$936.8 million by 2026, after growing at a CAGR of 7.1% during 2021-2026.
Coatings on wood surfaces are mainly for protective and decorative purposes. In recent years, manufacturers of wood coatings have devoted their research and development resources to improving waterborne coatings due to their huge environmental advantage. Waterborne coatings offer finishers outstanding environmental benefits such as VOC compliance, lower odor and fewer harmful organic vapors, lower flammability, a safer and healthier workplace with fewer allergies and less skin irritation, and reduced fire hazards. Along with these come economic advantages such as lower insurance and storage costs, and lower hazardous waste disposal costs. They also allow for application advantages such as the ability to use existing application equipment to apply at varying thicknesses and reduced labor for clean-up. Fluorosurfactants can be used in low-VOC latex architectural paints as multi-functional additives to provide wetting, leveling, anti-blocking, oil repellency and dirt pick up resistance properties. Compared to silicone surfactants, fluorosurfactants have the most power to reduce surface tension in water and water-based binders, especially in PUD resin. They also do not cause recoatability issues in wood coatings, are low-foaming products, help improve wetting and leveling in waterborne wood coatings.
Due to the pandemic, there was a supply chain disruption in the global and local enterprises which were dealing with the manufacturing of fluorosurfactants. Also, due to the coronavirus, the production of fluorosurfactants experienced difficulties like untimely deliveries of raw materials. Furthermore, the building and construction operations came to a sudden halt, owing to which the demand for paints and coatings subsequently decreased during the pandemic. In different areas, there a temporary suspension of building and construction activities was induced. For instance, In Quarter 2 (Apr to June) 2020, construction production in Great Britain dropped by a record 35.0 percent compared with Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020. In addition, a decline in business for at least five months during 2020 coupled with lower demand from a few major markets put pressure on the profitability of fluorosurfactants manufacturers and vendors. All of these factors limited the fluorosurfactants market growth during the outbreak. However, due to the recapitulation of construction activities in various countries, the demand for paints and coatings is estimated to rise in the upcoming years, which will positively impact the fluorosurfactants market growth. For instance, in June 2020, the Australian Government has announced the “HomeBuilder initiative”, a time-limited grant program to help the residential construction market to bounce back from the Coronavirus crisis. In addition to this substantial investment in housing, the Government of Canada will also provide $236.7 million through Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy to help extend and expand the emergency response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
North America holds a major share of the fluorosurfactants market owing to the increasing construction and automotive industry in North American regions such as Canada, Mexico, and the United States, which is accelerating the demand for paints and coatings in the region. According to the US Census Bureau, privately-owned housing starts in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,547,000. This is 1.2 percent (8.5%) more than the revised October estimate of 1,528,000, and 12.8 percent (11.3%) higher than the November 2019 rate of 1,371,000. The National Housing Strategy (NHS), a 10-year plan, was launched in November 2017. With a $40 billion investment, the proposal will provide housing for 530,000 families and reduce chronic homelessness by half, boosting Canada's residential sector. According to the International Trade Administration (ITA), with USD 99 billion in annual revenues, Mexico is the fifth-largest producer of auto parts worldwide. The electric, plug-in, and hybrid vehicle market reached 25,608 units in 2019, representing a 43.8 percent growth compared to 2018. Thus, it is anticipated that the increasing construction and automotive industry in North America, the demand for paints and coating will also gradually rise, which will then boost the fluorosurfactants market growth in the region during the forecast period.
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Fluorosurfactants Market Growth Drivers:
- New paint formulations are required to meet low-VOC regulations
The focus of interior latex paint performance has been on improved hiding power, scrub resistance and color acceptance properties. Driven by regulatory initiatives, new paint formulations are required to meet low-VOC regulations. These regulations have forced paint formulators to seek practical solutions to overcome additional challenges, such as poor wetting, flow, foaming, block resistance and stain resistance that result from the reduction in VOC content in paints. Easy-clean and stain resistance are not only highly desired by consumers, but these properties can also extend paint service life and reduce recoat cycles for environmental protection. Stains that adhere to interior latex paint films are divided into two groups: hydrophilic and hydrophobic. Hydrophilic stains, often called common household stains, include soy sauce, tea, coffee, red wine, colored markers, etc. Hydrophobic stains mainly come from oily hands or fingerprints typically found around door frames and light switches. Other hydrophobic stains are crayons, pencils, or tomato sauce. Hydrophobic stain washability depends largely on additives if the binder type and PVC level are set. Fluorosurfactants (FS) have proven to be the only chemical in the additive class that can provide oil resistance through migration to the paint surface when the paint is wet, and cure into it when the paint is dry. Due to latex paint formulation complexity, simply adding a fluorosurfactant to the formulation is less effective than using it to optimize the total formulation.
- R&D Investment:
Researchers and companies are heavily investing in the research and development of fluorosurfactants to increase its applications. For instance, in February 2016, The MEGAFACE DS line of pyrolytic fluorosurfactants was developed by DIC Corporation. The fluoro groups in pyrolytic fluorosurfactants dissociate as a result of thermal processing. The MEGAFACE DS line of goods features ground-breaking proprietary solutions that take advantage of essential organic molecular design and polymer design technologies that have been developed over many years.
The Major Players in this Market Include
The major companies in the fluorosurfactants market include Chemours, 3M Company, Merck, DIC Corporation, Omnova, Maflon, Advanced Polymer, Inc., The Dow Chemical Company, and Chemguard. The key focus of the companies has shifted towards product launch.
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