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Global Grease Market - Outlook and Forecast 2022-2027
The grease market is projected to grow from USD 3.6 billion in 2021 to USD 4.5 billion by 2027, at a CAGR of 3.57% during the forecast period. Grease serves as a lubricant for mechanical parts and components, reducing friction, wear, and increasing efficiency and service life. It also acts as a sealant, preventing leakage and keeping out contaminants, while providing a protective lubricating film against rust. Grease finds application in various lubrication operations.
The changing market dynamics are driven by customer demands for high-performance lubricants that enhance efficiency and deliver superior performance. Currently, metallic soap-based greases dominate the market share, but due to fluctuating raw material prices and stringent government regulations, consumers are shifting towards organic soap greases. Organic thickeners, known as high-temperature thickeners, are formulated to meet extreme lubrication requirements in long-service applications.
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USD 3.6 billion in 2020
Type, Base-Oil, End-Use, and Geography
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To gain a comprehensive understanding of the market, one can refer to a detailed grease report comprising over 275 pages, including 167 tables and 80 exhibits.
In 2021, lithium grease holds the largest market share globally. However, the rising adoption of electric vehicles has led to increased demand for lithium, driving up the prices of raw materials for lithium grease. According to the research, the lithium grease market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% during 2022-2027, resulting in a decline in its market share. Polyurea, as an organic alternative, offers several advantages over lithium grease and shows potential for standardizing manufacturing procedures while being cost-effective. Moreover, polyurea, being composed of organic components, is more environmentally friendly than other metallic greases.
The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region is poised to be the fastest-growing in terms of GDP growth globally. It comprises emerging economies such as China, India, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam. Factors contributing to its growth include large and relatively young populations, substantial investments in physical and digital infrastructure, low-cost labor, and rising income levels.
The APAC region hosts major industries in automotive, manufacturing, food & beverages, and construction. China and India, in particular, represent significant markets for the automotive industry within APAC.
In recent years, global warming caused by environmental pollution has led many countries to enforce strict regulations on the use of chemical materials. Governing bodies across different countries have implemented rules on grease due to its environmental impact. Grease consists of base oil, thickener, and additives, with most types in the market being mineral oil-based. Mineral oil poses high eco-toxicity and low biodegradability, making it an environmental threat and source of pollution.
Proper management of grease is crucial as it is not recycled after use. On-site waste grease should be stored in appropriate containers away from drains. When grease mixes with water or enters sewage drains, it can cause pH imbalances, foaming, and result in water pollution, harming aquatic life and posing health hazards for humans.
The market is segmented based on various factors, including type, base-oil, end-use, and geography.
Segmentation by Type
Segmentation by Base Oil
Segmentation by End-Use
Segmentation by Geography
North America – US, Canada
Europe – Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, Russia, Rest of Europe
APAC – China, Japan, India, South Korea, Australia, Rest of APAC
Latin America – Brazil, Mexico, Rest of Latin America
Middle East & Africa – South Africa, UAE, Iran, Rest of MEA
According to estimates, the metallic segment is projected to be the largest in the grease market, while the organic grease market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.7% during the forecast period.
Among the various types of thickeners, metallic soap-based grease with its three classifications (straight, mixed, and complex) is currently the most widely used. These metallic soaps are further categorized based on the metals used, such as lithium, aluminum, calcium, and sodium. Lithium soap, known for its excellent water resistance, breakdown resistance, high melting point, and good lubricity, is the dominant and cost-effective choice among metallic thickeners. Mixed greases combine the desired properties of two or more metallic soaps, while complex soaps are manufactured through the reaction of alkali with a blend of monobasic and dibasic acids.
Organic thickened grease offers superior long-life stability, corrosion protection, and excellent pumpability. Polyurea thickeners, formed by reacting di-isocyanate with mono and/or diamines, are commonly used in organic grease. The demand for organic grease is expected to increase in the coming years due to its environmentally friendly nature, low toxicity, and suitability for high-temperature applications.
Mineral oil-based greases currently hold the largest market share, while the bio-based grease market is anticipated to exhibit the fastest growth. Mineral oil, a liquid by-product of crude oil refining, is extensively utilized as a base oil in grease production due to its excellent lubricating properties. It easily dissolves a wide range of additives, enhancing the overall performance of grease, and is compatible with numerous grease thickener systems. Additionally, mineral oil is cost-effective compared to synthetic oils.
The automotive industry is both the largest and fastest-growing end-user segment in the grease market. Grease finds extensive usage in automotive applications, including CV joints, gear assemblies, and electrically operated mechanisms like windows, sunroofs, and seats. Automotive grease protects vehicle parts from friction, wear and tear, and offers greater consistency compared to other lubricants like motor oil. It is also employed in the maintenance of old automobiles. Automotive greases provide protection against wear, oxidation, and rust, thereby extending the lifespan of various mechanisms. The specific properties of grease used in vehicles depend on factors such as application, load, and environmental conditions.
The competitive landscape in the global grease market is currently becoming more intense. Vendors are facing challenges due to the volatility of raw material prices, particularly in securing lithium, which is essential for manufacturing lithium grease.
Leading multinational companies such as Shell plc (UK), ExxonMobil Corporation (US), Chevron Corporation (US), Sinopec Corporation (China), and Total Energies (France) are key players in the grease market. These major players emphasize innovation, product diversification, and expanding into new markets to maintain their competitive positions.
The forecast period for the grease market spans from 2022 to 2027, with 2021 as the base year. The market is segmented based on Type, Base-Oil, End-user, and Geography for the specified years. The report provides a comprehensive approach to the grease industry, enabling customers to efficiently analyze the market.
Key companies profiled in this report include Shell plc, ExxonMobil Corporation, Chevron Corporation, Sinopec Corporation, Axel Christiernsson, BEL-RAY, BHARAT PETROLEUM, CASTROL LIMITED, ENEOS Corporation, ENI, FUCHS, GULF OIL INDIA, HP Lubricants, IDEMITSU KOSAN Co., KLUBER LUBRICATION, LUKOIL, ORLEN OIL, PETRO CANADA, PETRONAS, PHILLIPS 66, PT PERTAMINA, ROSNEFT LUBRICANTS, SKF, Valvoline.
Key Questions Answered
What is the projected market size and growth rate of the global grease market by 2027?
The global grease market is projected to reach USD 4.5 billion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.57% during the forecast period.
What are the key driving factors in the global grease market?
The key driving factors in the global grease market include the growth of the industrial sector in the Asia-Pacific region, the increasing adoption of automation in industries, the rising demand for greases that meet sustainability standards, and the growing preference for polyurea grease due to its advantages over other types of grease.
Which type of grease is expected to be in high demand in 2027?
Lithium grease currently holds the largest market share, accounting for more than 70% of the global grease market. However, the rising prices of raw materials may lead to a decline in the market share of lithium grease. On the other hand, organic greases such as polyurea are gaining importance due to their various advantages over lithium grease, suggesting an increased demand for polyurea grease in the future.
Who are the key players in the global grease market?
The key players in the global grease market include Shell PLC, ExxonMobil Corporation, Chevron Corporation, and Sinopec Corporation. These companies are prominent players in the industry and contribute significantly to the market’s growth and development.
What is the growth rate of the Lithium Grease market?
According to the research, the lithium grease market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% during the period from 2022 to 2027. This indicates a positive growth trend for the market in the coming years.