Over the next few years, thermal paper market growth shall be driven by the rapid expansion of e-commerce and retail sectors and the growing demand for labeling in these businesses. As per Kinsta, consumers relying on online shopping will account for nearly 95% of purchases by 2040. E-commerce is providing unprecedented sale opportunities to all kinds of small, medium, and large enterprises.
Notably, sales through e-commerce accounted for nearly US$2.3 trillion in 2017, which is projected to nearly double to US$4.5 trillion by 2021. The growing prevalence of e-commerce businesses will augment demand for the paper. According to Global Market Insights, Inc., global thermal paper market size is likely to surpass US$5.6 billion by 2025. Stated below are some factors driving the industry forecast.
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Applications of thermal paper receipts
Extensive applications of thermal paper receipts at ATM machines, POS, and price labels have augmented the demand for the material. As the buying preferences of customers has shifted towards the digital medium, the use of cards and electronic payment options resulted in increased utilization of thermal paper receipts that are used to generate purchase invoice and maintain customer data. Sectors such as retail, food services, pharmaceutical, food & beverage, and others aggressively acquiring cashless payment modes are expected to fuel-up demand for the product.
Requirements of top coated thermal paper
Top coated thermal paper is widely utilized across various industries including logistics, retail, pharmaceutical, food, industrial, and specialty labels. Labeling across all these sectors including the food & beverage industry plays a vital role as it portrays the specification of a product. Stringent government regulations with respect to proper labeling of pharmaceuticals and food products shall augment demand for top coated thermal paper.
Adoption of thermal transfer technology
The use of thermal transfer technology has increased in the recent past and is likely to grow substantially as compared to other technologies. Using this technology reduces the cost of maintenance, enables durable and faster printing, and delivers high-quality images. Additionally, thermal transfer is extensively utilized in packaging and labeling as it renders a high resolution of the barcodes printed on the product wrapper. Surging demand for thermal paper has led to decreased utilization of harmful printing inks, due to which the outflow of industrial wastewater that negatively impacts the environment has substantially reduced.
Packaging & labeling applications
The packaging and labeling industry is experiencing substantial growth on account of the rapid rise of the e-commerce sector. Thermal paper receipts, invoices, and price tags contain specific information about the product and transactional details which is required during the transportation of the product. Additionally, surging product demand by consumers from different sectors such as healthcare, retail, food & beverage, and others will provide tremendous growth opportunities for the thermal paper producers.
E-commerce business in Asia Pacific
Increased demand for e-commerce products in Asia Pacific, due to high disposable income and rapid urbanization has resulted in exponential growth of the retail business, which will support thermal paper industry expansion in the region. Also, the availability and demand for high-speed internet in the region have influenced the inclination towards online money transfer and digital and cashless payments, which works by generating electronic receipts for these transactions, resulting in substantial demand for printing records and receipts.
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A thermal paper provides convenience to its users as it can easily be handled and loaded in the printers. The escalating demand for point-of-sale terminals or billing counters attributing all enterprise functions including payment processing, transportation, inventory management, and other CRM activities will expand the market size of the material. Also, on account of ease of use, higher efficiency, and substitute to cash, the rising trend of electronic and cashless payment shall encourage demand for thermal paper to be utilized in purchase or transaction invoices.