Sturdy growth in cosmetics and personal care industry will be majorly driving wax market demand over the forecast period. Wax has air and water barrier properties, which open up a myriad of applications in various industries such as packaging, cosmetics and adhesives. The global cosmetics industry is driven by product innovation, the rise of e-commerce and growth in travel retail across the globe. Wax has skincare properties and its flexibility and plasticity facilitates easy application. These properties make wax highly desirable in cosmetics industry.The crux of business growth in recent times has been extensively attributed to the vast expanse of R&D programs. Wax market, in this regard, has also been experiencing a transformation, given that as a long-in-existence organic compound, wax has found massive applications in numerous end-use domains. A couple of years ago for instance, a research group from the Colorado State University published a study related to edible superhydrophobic coatings from FDA-approved carnauba and beeswax for the food packaging domain.

Traditional wax like beeswax or tallow wax and synthetic wax like paraffin wax have been a part of the wax market landscape since its inception. However, now, with the increasing scarcity of fossil fuels, hydrogenated vegetable wax has also marked its debut in this business space. With the advancement of technology and increasing human endeavor for innovation, wax industry has depicted commendable progress through the product’s varied usage in packing, cosmetics and candle-making industries.

Increasing product application in packaging sector will also be a key factor for the wax market growth over the forecast duration. The global packaging industry is primarily driven by the BRICS market which accounts for approximately 37% of the global demand. The packaging industry growth in Asia Pacific is mainly a result of increasing consumption of consumer goods, which in turn has driven the need for sophisticated packaging. Increasing consumption levels in Asia Pacific and Latin America can be attributed to the rising disposable income of the middle class in these regions.

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The candle-making industry has been one of the major and ancient drivers for wax market. While the traditional usage of candles as a chief source of light after sundown does not really exist anymore, the candle manufacturing sector still remains a multimillion dollar business. Aided by the presence of the internet and social media, the trend of manufacturing decorative and scented candles has taken shape, added a new dimension to the growth of the candle producing domain, which in consequence has impelled wax industry size from candle manufacturing. With the evolution of myriad candle types, candle manufacturing has witnessed numerous changes over the centuries. At present, candle manufacturers not only use paraffin and fossil-based wax but also synthetic, bio-based and natural wax, which adds to the multi-dimensional growth of wax industry.

In 2016, the packaging segment accounted for a prominent share of the overall wax market. The product has extensive usage in paper and food packaging to provide extra protection against foreign odors and moisture. This segment shall be moderate to highly attractive over the next few years. Wood & fire-logs and rubber segments are expected to be the least attractive due to availability of substitutes. The adhesive end-user segment is likely to be low to moderately attractive due to the presence of synthetic chemical substitutes.

In 2016, Asia Pacific was the largest region, by volume and revenue in the global wax market. Asia Pacific was followed by Europe by volume. The Asia Pacific wax market is likely to expand at a comparatively faster rate in the next few years. This is due to high product demand in industries such as cosmetics, packaging and rubber & adhesives in China, India, Indonesia, South Korea and Japan. Wax market product demand in Latin America and Middle East & Africa is likely to expand at prominent rates in the next few years.

Global wax market exhibited a high degree of consolidation and the top 5 players accounted for more than 70% of the overall industry share in 2016. Major companies operating in the wax market which are highly integrated are China National Petroleum Corporation, Exxon Mobil, International Group, Royal Dutch Shell PLC and Sinopec Limited. These companies have an advantage due to their presence across the value chain compared to other product manufacturers. Market players are investing in R&D to maximize product application scope, which will ultimately accelerate wax market size during the forecast period.