The PU sole (footwear polyurethane) market size is estimated to be USD 4.2 billion in 2019 and projected to reach USD 5.9 billion by 2024, at a CAGR of 7.6%. Polyurethane is used in footwear soles to provide the perfect combination of ergonomics, microclimate, and comfort. The superior properties of polyurethane as shoe sole material, growth in footwear sales, and increasing production in the growing economies are expected to drive the PU sole (footwear polyurethane) market.
Polyurethane used as footwear soles is more durable than any other sole material. Polyurethane provides comfort, durability, good fit, and affordability, which are the properties expected in good footwear. Polyurethane soles have excellent mechanical properties and provide good resistance to abrasion. It also helps in keeping water out to some extent. The moldability and ease of processing also make it easy for designers to produce it on a large scale.
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The leading players in the global PU sole (footwear polyurethane) market include BASF SE (Germany), Covestro (Germany), DuPont (US), Huntsman (US), Wanhua Chemical Group (China), and Coim Group (Italy). These players account for significant market shares. The companies adopted expansion and new product developments as key strategies to enhance growth in the market.
BASF (Germany) is a chemical company having presence in more than 80 countries. The company operates through six business segments, namely, chemicals, performance products, functional materials & solutions, agricultural solutions, and oil & gas. It has 13 operating divisions and 86 strategic business units. In January 2018, BASF established a new MDI synthesis unit in Geismar, Louisiana. The annual capacity of MDI production of the production facility will increase from 300,000 metric tons to 600,000 metric tons. This expansion enabled the company to enhance its presence in North America.
Covestro (Germany) manufactures high-tech polymer materials and also develops many other consumer products. The company operates through three major business segments, namely, polyurethanes; polycarbonates; and coatings, adhesives, and specialty. In June 2018, the company increased its Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) production capacity at its West Virginia (US) plant. This expansion will increase Covestros annual production capacity of TPU by 25.0%, which in turn, will help the company to expand its footprint, globally.
PU sole (Footwear Polyurethane) Market by Raw Material (Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate, Toluene Diphenyl Diisocyanate, and Polyols), Application ( Casuals, Boots, Slippers & Sandals, Sports and Formals), and Region - Global Forecast to 2024
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