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Latest Market Report Confirms Profit Potential of Graphene

Can You Handle 40% Annual Growth, Reaching $126 Million in 2020.


According to the latest report to come out of Lux Research, providers of strategic advice and intelligence for business, finance and governmental institutions, the graphene market is set to grow from a $9 million foundation in 2012 to a phenomenal $126 million in 2020.

The report, “Is Graphene the Next Silicon … Or Just the Next Carbon Nanotube?” identifies the nanoplatelet market to be the major contributor to graphene’s rise, with the graphene film industry being somewhat impeded by a different set of technological challenges. Nanoplatelets will become increasingly employed in the energy storage and composites industries, and, as Dr. Chiu suggested in last year’s introduction to Grafoid, improvements in exfoliation techniques are resulting in more environmentally friendly production methods.

Lux Research also used their strategic Innovation Grid to plot graphene technology developers according to their Technical Value and Business Execution – companies that are strong on both axes reach the “Dominant” quadrant. It also assessed each company’s maturity, and provided an overall Lux Take. Among their findings:

  • G, Vorbeck lead the pack. “Dominant” XG Sciences and Vorbeck Materials will continue to rule among GNP start-ups, albeit with different commercialization tactics. Vorbeck has moved down the value chain into selling higher margin conductive inks, while XG supplies GNPs to corporate channel partners.
  • Too early to tell on second wave of start-ups. Newer start-ups – like Graphene Technologies, Grafoid, National Nanomaterials, Xolve and Haydale – have entered the landscape with bold claims of cheaper and better graphene. All are still ranked as “High-potential” or “Long-shot” with a lack of solid traction in any application.
  • Films face significant hurdles. Graphene films companies such as Bluestone Global Tech, Graphene Frontiers, Graphenea and Graphene Labs still face commercialization challenges. All are at the low end of the business execution spectrum, and a true leader has yet to emerge.

The research confirms much of what has been suggested by other market research companies, most noticeably the repoert relaesed by technavio at the end of 2012. Happily for the report also confirms the selection of companies identified as key players in the graphene field as far back as 2011.

The news also comes on the tails of the UK government’s decision to release £21 million in investment funding for graphene research, and the news from CambridgeIP that China, Korea and the US are becoming increasingly strong players in the field.

The report draws upon 7,351 graphene patents and applications that were filed worldwide by the end of 2012.

The Uk was responsible for only 54 of the total number if patents issued whereas Chinese institutions and corporations have attributed to them a hugely impressive 2,200. The US is second in the list with 1,754 patents. How ownership of these patents will play out in the market is less certain however, as the commercial value of different patents is obviously variable.

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