Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market Analysis by Product Types (Wax-Resin Material, Resin Material, and Wax Material); by Head Type (Flat Type, and Near Head); by Application (Mobile Printer, Desktop Printer, and Industrial Printer); and by End-User Industry (Entertainment & Hospitality, Manufacturing, Healthcare, Retail, and Transport & Logistics) – Global Supply & Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2023-2035

Buy Now Report ID: 4746 | Published Date: Mar 24, 2023

Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market Size, Forecast, and Trend Highlights Over 2023 - 2035

The global thermal transfer ribbon market is estimated to garner a revenue of around USD 5 Billion by the end of 2035 by growing at a CAGR of ~8% over the forecast period, i.e., 2023 – 2035. Further, the market generated a revenue of nearly USD 2 Billion in the year 2022. The growth of the market can be attributed to the increasing practices of cashless payments using barcode scanning.  People are now more likely to use QR codes to complete transactions. Thermal printers carefully print these codes, which contain the bank information, to provide a crisper image, and it is anticipated to boost the growth of the market. The QR Code Reach growth increased by almost 96% between 2018 and 2020. According to a study of participants from the US and the UK, 47% of respondents were in favor of adopting QR codes.

In addition to these, factors that are believed to fuel the market growth of thermal transfer ribbon include the rising admission in hospitals, owing to COVID-19 and other chronic diseases. According to the World Health Organization, more than four out of every five deaths from CVD are attributable to heart attacks and strokes. Thermal printers are mostly used in the healthcare sector to record real-time rhythm strips on hospital cardiac monitors and also for printing patient identification. Moreover, the number of hospitals is also rising which in turn is driving the market growth. There were over 8,000 hospitals in Japan as of 2020. Moreover, in Korea, there were nearly 4ooo hospitals.

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Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market: Key Insights

Base Year


Forecast Year




Base Year Market Size (2022)

~ USD 2 Billion

Forecast Year Market Size (2035)

~ USD 5 Billion

Regional Scope

  • North America (U.S., and Canada)
  • Latin America (Mexico, Argentina, Rest of Latin America)
  • Asia-Pacific (Japan, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, Rest of Asia-Pacific)
  • Europe (U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, NORDIC, Rest of Europe)
  • Middle East and Africa (Israel, GCC North Africa, South Africa, Rest of the Middle East and Africa)

Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market: Growth Drivers and Challenges


Growth Drivers

  • Growing Integration of IoT in Printing – IoT connected brings many new features to printers, which is likely to boost the demand for thermal printers followed by the thermal transfer ribbon market. The number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, such as vending machines, thermostats, security cameras, and networked printers, was predicted to reach 20 to 50 billion by 2020 all across the world.

  • Rising E-Commerce in the World – E-commerce has boosted the logistics, and online delivery of packages, with the growing e-commerce industry shipping labels, receipts, and barcodes also increased.  Globally more than a quarter of all retail sales, or USD 5 trillion, were made through retail e-commerce for the first time in 2022. By 2025, total spending on retail e-commerce is likely to be around USD 7 trillion. 

  • Growing Use of Thermal Printers in the Medical Sector– thermal printheads are used in making patient wristbands, labels, freezer storage, identification, and others. Owing to COVID-19, the number of patients visiting hospitals significantly rose. In the United States, hospitals saw over 1,55,000 covid patients as of January 2022.

  • New Launches of Thermal Printer Technology– For instance, the newest software that enables individuals to print at any time and any location is released by Toshiba America Business Solutions, Inc. Toshiba completely streamlines the printing process with its e-BRIDGE Global Print technology.

  • Increasing Use of Automatic Identification – Identification is an important application of security labels, such as barcodes, labels, and tags are all printed with the help of thermal printers and facilitate automatic identification. With a nearly 109% increase in cashless transactions from 2020 to 2025, Asia-Pacific will experience the fastest growth, followed by Africa and Europe with gains of around 76% and 79%, respectively, from 2025 to 2030.


  • Adverse impact on the environment- a poly-based material is used in the production of thermal transfer ribbons. This material is extracted from crude oil products, which is likely to lead to increased mining and eventually will impact the market growth. Moreover, the production of this poly blades material generates a huge amount of waste material, which also contributes to environmental pollution and is expected to hamper the market growth.
  • Various substitutes of thermal transfer ribbon are available 
  • Strict regulations on printing

Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market Segmentation

The global thermal transfer ribbon market is segmented and analyzed for demand and supply by the end-user industry into entertainment & hospitality, manufacturing, healthcare, retail, and transport & logistics. Out of the five end-user industries, the transport & logistics segment is estimated to gain the largest market share in the year 2035. The growth of the segment can be attributed to the rising demand for home deliveries and the growing trends of e-commerce. Thermal printers in the transport and logistics sector are highly used to seamlessly connect all locations along the transportation corridor. Along with this, it is also used in auto identification, it facilitates every step, from receiving materials to delivering them to customers. Platform-to-consumer delivery was used by roughly 2,700 million individuals in 2020. Moreover, in 2020, there were roughly 15 billion deliveries made throughout the world. In addition, global retail e-commerce sales were around 5 trillion dollars in 2021.

The global thermal transfer ribbon market is also segmented and analyzed for demand and supply by product types into wax-resin material, resin material, and wax material. Amongst these three segments, the wax-resin material segment is expected to garner a significant share in the year 2035. Ribbons made up of a combination of wax and ribbon have extremely high durability. The primary driving factor for the wax-resin material segment is the strength it offers to the ribbon. Other than this, this material also increases the life span of the print taken from the printer. Moreover, it is immune to changing climatic conditions and fluctuating temperatures. Therefore, it is also suitable for products that are constantly in contact with changing temperatures.

Our in-depth analysis of the global thermal transfer ribbon market includes the following segments:

             By Product Types

  • Wax-Resin Material
  • Resin Material
  • Wax Material

            By Head Type

  • Flat Type
  • Near Head

          By Application

  • Mobile Printer
  • Desktop Printer
  • Industrial Printer

        By End User Industry

  • Entertainment & Hospitality
  • Manufacturing
  • Healthcare
  • Retail
  • Transport & Logistics

Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market Regional Synopsis


The North American thermal transfer ribbon market, amongst the market in all the other regions, is projected to hold the largest market share by the end of 2035. The growth of the market can be attributed majorly to the rising cases of chronic illness which are increasing hospital admissions. Moreover, hospital invoices, patient information, and medical rhythms are being printed with more frequency using thermal printers. Every year, there are about 805,000 heart attacks in the US. 605,000 of those are first-time heart attacks. Also, there were nearly 77 million patient visits to health centers in the United States in 2010, and by 2020, there were over 114 million.  On the other hand, the market size in the region is expected to expand on the account of the frequent use of barcodes for transactions. By 2020, 11 million US households scanned a QR code around 10 million scans were recorded in 2018.

The Asia Pacific thermal transfer ribbon market, amongst the market in all the other regions, is projected to hold the second largest share during the forecast period. The growth of the market can be attributed majorly to the rising trend of cashless payments and higher efforts put in by the government to boost digital transactions. The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) created the "Cashless Vision" in 2018, and it contained suggestions for Japan's move towards a cashless society. It aims to have 40% of transactions be cashless by the time of the Osaka Expo in 2025, with a potential increase to 80% in the future. In addition to this, India recorded around 23 trillion digital transactions in the third quarter of FY23.

Further, the market in the Europe, amongst the market in all the other regions, is projected to hold a majority of the share by the end of 2035. The growth of the market can be attributed majorly to the rising demand for receipts, even in the world of digitization, paper receipt still hasn’t lost their touch. Almost 11 billion till receipts, which cost at least USD 34 million to produce, are distributed annually by UK merchants. Cash transaction is still a huge part of Europe’s economy, which also increases the demand for hardcopy receipts. According to the statistics of the European Parliament, cash accounts for more than 50% of all payment transactions in more than 75% of Member States, and it is the most common payment method overall in almost all Member States.

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Top Featured Companies Dominating the Global Thermal Transfer Ribbon Market

    • Abbott Services
      • Company Overview
      • Business Strategy
      • Key Product Offerings
      • Financial Performance
      • Key Performance Indicators
      • Risk Analysis
      • Recent Development
      • Regional Presence
      • SWOT Analysis 
    • Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd.,
    • ITW ShineMark
    • Analysis Armor Group
    • Hangzhou Todaytec Digital Co., Ltd.
    • Zebra Technologies Corp
    • Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    • Honeywell International Inc.
    • General Co., Ltd.
    • TSC Printronix Auto ID
    • Domino Printing Sciences plc


In The News

  • Domino Printing Sciences plc announced the launch of modern thermal transfer overprinters (TTO) from the new Vx-Series. It aims at improving the productivity of flexible food packaging machines. It maximizes production efficiency with the minimum use of ribbon.

  • TSC Printronix Auto ID (TSC) announces the collaboration with Distribution Management, it has become the authorized distributor of TSC's line of premium, high-performance thermal printers, OEM labels, and supplies available in North America.


Global Economic Impact

Request Insights
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 global thermal transfer ribbon market?

Ans: Increasing use in the healthcare industry, rising trends of digital transactions, and the launch of new types pf thermal printers are the major factors driving the market growth.

2) What would be the CAGR of global thermal transfer ribbon market over the forecast period?

Ans: The market is anticipated to attain a CAGR of ~8% over the forecast period, i.e., 2023 – 2035.

3) What are the challenges affecting the global thermal transfer ribbon market growth?

Ans: Harm to the environment, stringent regulation on the printing industry, and availability of different substitutes are estimated to be the growth hindering factors for the market expansion.

4) Which region will provide more business opportunities for growth of global thermal transfer ribbon market in future?

Ans: The market in the North American region is projected to hold the largest market share by the end of 2035 and provide more business opportunities in the future.

5) Who are the major players dominating the global thermal transfer ribbon market?

Ans: The major players in the market are Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd., ITW ShineMark, Analysis Armor Group, Hangzhou Todaytec Digital Co., Ltd, Zebra Technologies Corp, Ricoh Company, Ltd., Honeywell International Inc., General Co., Ltd., TSC Printronix Auto ID, Inc, and Domino Printing Sciences plc.

6) How are the company profiles selected?

Ans: The company profiles are selected based on the revenues generated from the product segment, the geographical presence of the company which determines 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 thermal transfer ribbon market?

Ans: The market is segmented by head type, product type, application, end user industry, and by region.

8) Which segment captures the largest market size in the end user industry segment in the thermal transfer ribbon market?

Ans: The transport & logistics segment is anticipated to garner the largest market size by the end of 2035 and display significant growth opportunities.

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