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SYNTHETIC LATEX POLYMERS ... A GROWING GLOBAL BUSINESS

 FAIRFIELD, N.J., Aug. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The worldwide latex polymers industry continues to increase in complexity as international trade barriers fall and producers strive to sustain their businesses in a challenging economic environment. Domestic boundaries have become a smaller factor in the business plans of most major latex suppliers. Suppliers are increasingly extending manufacturing operations into local regions to exploit new growth opportunities.
 The use and supply of synthetic latex polymers has truly become a worldwide business, with demand in the three major world markets of United States, Western Europe, and Japan approaching 3.7 million dry tonnes with a market value of US $7.3 billion in 1992, according to Kline & Company, Fairfield, N.J. Worldwide growth of these products is expected to be 3 percent annually over the next five years.
 In a series of multiclient reports entitled "Synthetic Latex Polymers 1993," the international business consulting firm analyzes the market dynamics and manufacturing costs of latex polymers in North America and Western Europe. These two regions collectively accounted for over 85 percent of total worldwide demand (comprising the United States, Western Europe, and Japan) in 1992.
 Five major latex types -- styrene-butadiene (SB), acrylics (pure and styrene-acrylics), polyvinyl acetate (PVAc), vinyl-acrylics, and vinyl acetate-ethylene -- together accounted for over 90 percent of total demand worldwide. The market place is characterized by direct intermaterial competition from each of these products. Each product is consumed in similar relative proportions within each region, with certain exceptions. Demand in the United States is much more heavily weighted toward pure acrylic and vinyl-acrylic latex than in either Europe or Japan, while these two regions both consume greater relative proportions of styrene-acrylics and PVAc.
 Consumption of these major latex types in the five leading volume markets of paper, adhesives, paint and coatings, carpet, and textiles accounted for nearly 90 percent of total 1992 tonnage.
 "Synthetic Latex Polymers 1993" is the fourth edition of Kline & Company's multiclient study of the U.S. synthetic latex industry. The scope of this edition has been expanded to include a comprehensive manufacturing and production cost structure analysis of the five major latex types in addition to the traditional market analysis of emulsion polymers. This comprehensive industry analysis is presented in two separate volumes: Volume 1, which assesses the commercial market and supply dynamics of the business, and Volume 2, which assesses the manufacturing economics of major latex types. Further, the business consulting firm has issued each of these two volumes in both North American and Western European regional formats.
 Consolidation in global latex manufacture has led to a more compact supply base of producers. As product lines broaden among a smaller group of larger latex suppliers, international competition is likely to intensify as users gain access to a greater array of more easily interchangeable products. All major synthetic latex polymers except PVAc are copolymers and compete with each other in major application segments.
 Commercial production of these major latex types is mostly based on batch emulsion polymerization technology. Batch polymerization offers the flexibility to produce a large number of formulations for a variety of applications. Commercial processes for production of emulsions essentially consist of three separate batch operations. Alternatively, some emulsion producers employ continuous polymerization technology to produce SB and PVAc, where economies of scale are derived from these longer production periods. Kline's study presents a quantitative picture of the production cost structures of the industry cost leader and the industry laggard for each major latex type.
 The reports are available from Kline & Company on a subscription basis only. For more information, contact Kline & Company, 165 Passaic Avenue, Fairfield, NJ 07004.
 -0- 8/9/93
 /CONTACT: Louis Rossi of Kline & Company, 201-227-6262/


CO: Kline & Company ST: New Jersey IN: CHM SU: PDT

CM -- CH003 -- 0756 08/09/93 12:22 EDT
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Date:Aug 9, 1993
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