Smart Card Materials Market Overview
The smart card materials market size is forecast to reach US$1.2 billion in 2027 after growing at a CAGR of 4% during 2022-2027. Much of the market’s growth will be contributed by contactless smart cards in the coming years. The COVID-19 pandemic catapulted the demand for contactless payment globally and the same trajectory is expected to be there in the coming years as well. Polyethylene terephthalate-glycol (PETG) is expected to contribute immensely to the market’s growth in the coming years due to its environment-friendly property. Other raw materials like polycarbonate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene will witness significant demand in the manufacturing of smart cards. Telecommunication amplified the smart card market during the pandemic owing to high connectivity requirements and this application segment is projected to drive the market’s growth in the forecast period also. However, the toxic nature of polyvinyl chloride might hinder the growth of the market.
In comparison to most industries that suffered at the hands of COVID-19, the smart card materials market got a massive boost during the pandemic owing to increased demand for contactless cards and higher requirements of connectivity. People are more driven towards contactless payment which saw the higher implementation of contactless smart cards. Similarly, as people were locked inside their houses, the demand for connectivity surged during COVID-19, augmenting the growth of the smart card materials market. Even though there were supply chain disruptions and manufacturing units were shutdown, this market not only survived but thrived during the pandemic. Going forward, the smart card materials market will witness a huge growth rate due to favorable growing conditions created by COVID-19 in telecommunication, banking, and many other sectors.
Smart Card Materials Market – By Type
The contactless card dominated the smart card materials market in 2021 and is growing at a CAGR of 3.8% in the forecast period. The increasing demand for contactless cards amplified during COVID-19 to avoid aerial transmission of the virus and make safe transactions avoiding physical contact. Various governments across the world along with World Health Organization (WHO) advised going for contactless smart cards to contain the spread of the virus. This type of smart card provides convenience and speed to the users. Looking at the rising demand for contactless smart cards, manufacturers globally are now focusing on developing more contactless smart cards to meet the market demand. In a recent development, in January 2020, Confidex joined hands with Thales, which is a world leader in digital security, to develop a flexible clap (Calypso Light application) card for the mass transit market. This is a flexible smart media for Calypso-based system which involves contactless paper-based cards. Such development in the contactless smart cards segment will stimulate the smart card materials market in the forecast period.
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Smart Card Materials Market – By Raw Material
Polyethylene terephthalate-glycol (PETG) dominated the raw materials segment in 2021. Its superior properties like durability, chemical resistance, and formability make it an excellent choice in the manufacturing of smart cards. Furthermore, it is 100% recyclable which enhances its environmental quality. Manufacturers across the globe are inclined towards producing sustainable smart cards and materials like polyethylene terephthalate-glycol play a vital role in this strategy. In a similar development, US based CPI Card Group, a market leader in card payment solutions, launched a premium payment card in June 2020 which was made up of recycled PETG. Going forward, the company aims to keep the focus on developing more eco-friendly products which will witness higher utilization of PETG materials, thereby contributing to the growth of the smart card materials market in the forecast period. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) held the highest market share in 2020 and will continue to contribute significantly to the market’s growth in the coming years. Polycarbonate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, and paper will witness significant demand in the smart card materials.
Smart Card Materials Market – By Application
Telecommunication dominated the smart card materials market in 2021 and is growing at a CAGR of 4.3% in the forecast period. This application segment is projected to be on a progressive track in the forecast period due to increased connectivity services and a surge in digital services across the globe. Much of this change happened during the COVID-19 which made telecommunication being one of the positively contributing segments to the market’s drive with increased selling of sim cards. The rise in digital marketing in many countries in the last few years has increased the sales of smartphones. For instance, India witnessing a revolutionary change in its digital services in the last few years which resulted in the high selling of smartphones in the country. According to July 2020 report by Indian Cellular & Electronics Association (ICEA), the mobile user base in India is projected to reach 820 million by 2022 as compared to 500 million users in 2019. This increasing penetration of smartphones will demand more uses of SIM cards, which, in turn, will boost the smart card materials market growth in the coming years. Furthermore, the growing demand for smart card materials in the banking, financial services, and insurance sector due to their high-level security features is a key factor expected to drive the market’s growth during the forecast period. Smart card products like debit/cards are on the rise in recent times due to expansion in the BFSI sector, which will also contribute to the smart card materials market in the coming years.
Smart Card Materials Market – By Geography
The Asia-Pacific region dominated the smart card materials market in 2021 with a 30% market share. This region is anticipated to drive the growth of the target market in the forecast period. The growth in the region is expected to be driven by increased demand for connectivity and rapid digitalization in emerging economies like China and India. For instance, according to the China Internet Information Center report, 5G mobile phone shipments in China is estimated to be 80 percent of the total shipments in the second half of 2021, due to the 5G revolution in the country. This digital rise in China has increased the demand for more uses of SIM cards, which will augment the smart cards material market in the coming years. Similarly, according to National Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency’s 2021 data, 5G technology in India is expected to contribute $450 billion to the country’s economy between 2023-2040. This massive digital rise in the Asia-Pacific region will demand more SIM cards, ultimately driving the growth of the smart card materials market in the coming years. Apart from Asia-Pacific, the North American region is expected to contribute significantly due to the rise in a cashless economy and the high level of technology in the region.
Smart Card Materials Market Drivers
Blockchain enabled user information security system will drive the market’s growth
The implementation of advanced technology like blockchain allowed businesses to develop applications that help achieve strict security requirements. Smart cards are well equipped in managing cryptographic keys, which enables fast and secure transactions through blockchain applications. Smart cards operate as vaults to store cryptographic keys. When these smart cards are connected to the internet with the help of POS readers, the key matching process initiates. This process matches the keys stored in smart cards with keys stored in the online libraries. Upon successful matching of cryptographic keys, users are authenticated. This way, banks, and other financial organizations can secure and authenticate user identity in an enhanced way, ultimately reducing the chances of cyber thefts. At present, blockchain technology is gaining traction in the North American region, and in the coming years, it will spread rapidly across the globe. The booming blockchain technology and its uses in banking and other financial sectors will boost the smart card materials market in the forecast year.
Growing demand for eco-friendly smart cards will drive the market’s growth
The increased awareness among manufacturers for creating environment-friendly and sustainable materials globally will boost the market’s growth in the coming years. Today, banking and financial sectors are incorporating sustainable materials in the production of green smart cards owing to their environmentally conscious customers. For instance, France based company Thales, which deals with smart cards production, developed Thales Gemalto Bio-Sourced Cards which reduces the use of PVC by more than 80% in the cards. These cards are manufactured with the help of Poly Lactic Acid (PLA), which acts as a sustainable plastic alternative for biodegradable cards. This growing demand and increased awareness about eco-friendly materials for smart card manufacturing will boost the target market’s growth in the forecast period.
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Smart Card Materials Market Challenges
Toxic nature of PVC might hinder the growth of the market
PVC is a non-biodegradable material and creates toxic pollution when incinerated. Due to these reasons manufacturers are restricting its uses and developing alternative materials to PVC. Most debit and credit cards are made of plastic and this plastic is composed of polyvinyl chloride. Owing to the harmful properties of PVC, banks along with smart card material manufacturers are hesitant towards the usage of PVC material which is not a good sign for the smart card material market. According to the 2020 survey by CPI Card Group, 91% of credit and debit cardholders are concerned about plastic waste. This increasing concern and awareness toward environmental sustainability among customers encouraging smart card manufacturers and banks to adopt nature-friendly materials, which will reduce the usage of PVC, and, in turn, this might hinder the growth of the smart card materials market in the forecast period.
Smart Card Materials Industry Outlook
Investment in R&D activities, acquisitions, product and technology launches are key strategies adopted by players in the Smart Card Materials Market. Major players in the Smart Card Materials Market are:
CPI Card Group
HID Global Corporation
In January 2021, France based company IDEMIA joined hands with Jyske Bank, the second-largest Danish-owned bank, for the rollout of recycled PVC cards in Denmark. As part of environmental commitments to its customers, Jyske Bank selected IDEMIA and signed a four-year agreement with the company, and this will contribute to the growth of the smart card materials market in the forecast period.
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Polyethylene terephthalate-glycol (PETG) is anticipated to contribute extensively to the market’s growth during the forecast period. The usage of PETG in the production of smart cards is on the rise owing to its durable and eco-friendly nature.
The telecommunication application segment held the majority of the market share in 2020 and it is projected to drive the market’s growth due to increased connectivity, demanding a large number of subscriber identity module (SIM) cards. According to September 2021 data by National Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency, the Indian smartphone market will be the second-largest smartphone market by 2025 globally with 1 billion installed devices.
Asia-Pacific is projected to drive the market’s growth owing to the rapid adoption of digital services in emerging economies like China and India. According to the April 2021 data by China Internet Information Center, China built the world’s largest 5G mobile network in 2020 with 260 million 5G mobile terminals connected to the network.
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