Glass Alternative Materials Market Analysis by Type (Polycarbonate, Transparent Wood, and Others); by Light Transmission (Up To 80%, >80%-90%, and >90%), and by Application (Visual Application, Automotive, Electronic, Construction, Medical Devices, Aviation, Energy, and Others) – Global Supply & Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2023-2033

Buy Now Report ID: 4384 | Published Date: Feb 14, 2023

Global Glass Alternative Materials Market: Growth Drivers and Challenges

Growth Drivers

  • Burgeoning Population - The swelling of the population across the world is expected to increase the demand for housing and other buildings for survival. This has increased the need for construction and is further anticipated to fuel the demand for glass alternative materials and expand the market size. As per the World Bank, the total population of the world stood at 7.76 billion in 2021, up from 7.09 billion in 2012.


  • Rise in Residential Construction – The rising disposable income of the rising population has created a huge demand for residential construction. The increase in housing buildings is thus expected to bolster the sales of glass alternative materials in the assessment period. As per the United States Census Bureau, till June 2021, there were 142,153,010 housing units in the U.S. Furthermore, the building permits in the same period were 1,736,982 units.

  • Increase of Commercial Building Construction – Recent development and industrialization have caused the increased construction of commercial buildings. The need for commercial properties is thus forecasted to bring lucrative growth opportunities in the glass alternative materials market. The Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS) calculated that in 2018, there were approximately 5.9 million U.S. commercial buildings. Further, the number of commercial buildings increased by 6% since the CBECS was last conducted in 2012.

  • High Investment in Real Estate – As per recent estimates, the revenue of real estate companies worldwide stood at USD 9.5 billion in 2021.


  • Easy Availability of Other Substitutes
  • Fluctuating Costs of Raw Materials
  • Stringent Rules by Government

The glass alternative materials market is segmented and analyzed for demand and supply by application into visual, automotive, electronic, construction, medical devices, aviation, energy, and others. Out of these, the construction segment is anticipated to garner the significant market share by 2033, owing to high expenditure on the construction industry. As per recent statistics, the total spending in the U.S. construction sector was estimated to be approximately USD 2 trillion in 2020. Furthermore, on the basis of type the market is segmented into polycarbonate, transparent wood, and others. Among these the polycarbonate segment held the largest market share with 45% in the year 2022 backed by the growing demand for glass alternatives in a variety of industries, such as automotive, construction, and aviation. 

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Market Definition

The materials which can be used as a substitute of glass are referred to as glass alternatives. Acrylic, also called plexiglass or PMMA, is becoming a popular alternative to glass windows. While manufacturers have used waterproof acrylic windows for years, plexiglass acrylic sheets are gaining traction among business owners and some homeowners. Acrylic sheets can be used as greenhouse plastic, playhouse windows, shed windows, perspex mirrors airplane windows etc. as an alternative to glass. Light transmittance – Acrylic sheets transmit up to 92% light, while glass can only transmit 80-90% light and moreover they are lightweight or shatter-resistant. Crylux, plexiglass, acrylite, astariglas, lucite, perclax, and perspex are a few of the trade names given to acrylic glass.

Major Macro-Economic Indicators Impacting the Market Growth



The chemical industry is a major component of the economy. According to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, in 2020, for the U.S., the value added by chemical products as a percentage of GDP was around 1.9%. Additionally, according to the World Bank, Chemical industry in the U.S. accounted for 16.43% to manufacturing value-added in 2018. With the growing demand from end-users, the market for chemical products is expected to grow in future. According to UNEP (United Nations Environment Program), the sales of chemicals are projected to almost double from 2017 to 2030. In the current scenario, Asia Pacific is the largest chemical producing and consuming region. China has the world’s largest chemical industry, that accounted for annual sales of approximately more than USD 1.5 trillion, or about more than one-third of global sales, in recent years. Additionally, a vast consumer base and favorable government policies have boosted investment in China’s chemical industry. Easy availability of low-cost raw material & labor as well as government subsidies and relaxed environmental norms have served as a production base for key vendors globally. On the other hand, according to the FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry), the chemical industry in India was valued at 163 billion in 2019 and it contributed 3.4% to the global chemical industry. It ranks 6th in global chemical production. This statistic shows the lucrative opportunity for the investment in businesses in Asia Pacific countries in the upcoming years.

Global Glass Alternative Materials Market Regional Synopsis

Regionally, the global glass alternative materials market is studied into five major regions including North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Middle East & Africa region. Amongst these, the market in Asia Pacific held the largest market share of 38% in the year 2022, owing to the rapid expansion of the construction industry and the presence of leading market key players. The building construction industry in Asia Pacific is expected to reach ~USD 3 million by 2024, with a robust CAGR of 7%.


The global glass alternative materials market is further classified on the basis of region as follows:

  • North America (U.S. & Canada) Market size, Y-O-Y growth, Market Players Analysis & Opportunity Outlook
  • Latin America (Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Rest of Latin America) Market size, Y-O-Y growth, Market Players Analysis & Opportunity Outlook
  • Europe (U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Hungary, Belgium, Netherlands & Luxembourg, NORDIC (Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark), Ireland, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Turkey, Russia, Rest of Europe), Poland, Turkey, Russia, Rest of Europe) Market size, Y-O-Y growth, Market Players Analysis & Opportunity Outlook
  • Asia-Pacific (China, India, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, Rest of Asia-Pacific) Market size, Y-O-Y growth, Market Players Analysis & Opportunity Outlook
  • Middle East and Africa (Israel, GCC (Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman), North Africa, South Africa, Rest of Middle East and Africa) Market size, Y-O-Y growth, Market Players Analysis & Opportunity Outlook


Market Segmentation


Our in-depth analysis of the global glass alternative materials market includes the following segments:


By Type

  • Polycarbonate (45%)
  • Transparent Wood (30%)
  • Others (15%)

By Light Transmission

  • Up to 80%
  • >80%-90%
  • >90%

By Application

  • Visual Application
  • Automotive
  • Electronic
  • Construction
  • Medical Devices
  • Aviation
  • Energy
  • Others

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Top Featured Companies Dominating the Global Glass Alternative Materials Market

    • Covestro AG
      • Company Overview
      • Business Strategy
      • Key Product Offerings
      • Financial Performance
      • Key Performance Indicators
      • Risk Analysis
      • Recent Development
      • Regional Presence
      • SWOT Analysis
    • Trinseo S.A.
    • Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company, Inc.
    • Evonik Industries AG
    • 3A Composites GmbH
    • Lucite International
    • Elastin International Corp
    • Arkema Group
    • Sun Acrylam Private Limited
    • Aristech Surfaces LLC
    • Asia Poly Industrial Sdn Bhd
    • Ray Chung Acrylic Enterprise Co., Ltd.



In The News

  • Covestro AG has received ISCC PLUS certification and henceforth can now offer its customers in the ASEAN region large volumes of the high-performance plastic polycarbonate, including compounds and polycarbonate films, produced with alternative raw materials of the same good quality as their fossil-based counterparts.

  • 3A Composites GmbH has increased the production of PERSPEX clear acrylic sheet by 300% to meet the rising demand across the UK and Europe. The installation of hygienic protection screens like in supermarkets or drug stores will reduce the risk of further infections of COVID-19 and protect the front line workers.


Global Economic Impact

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Despite Inflation & Fearing Recession, Businesses Across the Globe Expected to Do Better in 2023:

In 2023, market players might incur losses due to huge gap in currency translation followed by contracting revenues, shrinking profit margins & cost pressure on logistics and supply chain.
Controlling Inflation has become the first priority for global economies from last quarter of 2022 and to be followed in 2023. With skewed economic situations, rise in interest rate by governments to control spending and inflation, spiked oil and gas prices, high inflation, geo-political issues including U.S. & China trade war, Russia-Ukraine conflict to intensify the global economic issues.
The interest rates in the U.S. may be less sensitive in 2023 as compared to 2022; sigh of relief for businesses. Positive business sentiments, healthy business balance sheets, growth in construction spending (private construction value in 2022 stood at $1,429.2 billion, 11.7 percent (±1.0 percent) above the $1,279.5 billion spent in 2021, Residential construction in 2022 was $899.1 billion, up by 13.3 percent (±2.1 percent) from $793.7 billion in 2021, non-residential construction touched $530.1 billion, 9.1 percent (±1.0 percent) above the $485.8 billion in 2021.) showcases minimal impact of recession in the country.
Similarly, spiked spending in the European and major Asia economics including, India, China & Japan to showcase less impact on the global demand.

Author Credits:  Smruti Ranjan, Rajrani Baghel

Key Questions Answered in the Report

1) What are the major factors driving the growth of the glass alternative materials market?

Ans: The expansion of construction industry along with the rise in the construction of buildings and infrastructure are some of the factors that are expected to propel the market growth.

2) What would be the CAGR of glass alternative materials market over the forecast period?

Ans: The market is anticipated to attain a CAGR of ~6% over the forecast period, i.e., 2023 – 2033.

3) What are the challenges affecting the glass alternative materials market growth?

Ans: The availability of alternative chemicals along with stringent rules by the government and fluctuation in raw material are some of the factors that are expected to hamper the market growth.

4) Which region will provide more business opportunities for growth of glass alternative materials market in future?

Ans: The market in Asia Pacific held the largest market share of 38% in the year 2022 and is expected to provide more business opportunities in the future.

5) Who are the major players dominating the glass alternative materials market?

Ans: The major players in the market are Covestro AG, Trinseo S.A., Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company, Inc, Evonik Industries AG, 3A Composites GmbH, Lucite International, Elastin International Corp, and others.

6) How are the company profiles selected?

Ans: The company profiles are selected based on the revenues generated from the product segment, geographical presence of the company which determine the revenue generating capacity as well as the new products being launched into the market by the company.

7) What are the segments in the glass alternative materials market?

Ans: The market is segmented by type, light transmission, application, and by region.

8) Which segment captures the largest market size in application segment in the glass alternative materials market?

Ans: The polycarbonate segment captured the largest market share by 45% in the year 2022 and is expected to display significant growth opportunities.

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