Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld

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The Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing industry managed to fare well during the recession. Despite lower employment numbers, companies can't skimp on protective gear for employees, as losses due to job-related injuries can amount to much more than the cost of gear. After staying afloat in 2008 and 2009, revenue started to expand more rapidly, and this trend is expected to continue through 2017. For these reasons, industry research firm IBISWorld has added a report on the Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing industry to its growing industry report collection.

IBISWorld Market Research

IBISWorld Market Research

As industrial activity reversed after the recession, revenue followed suit, maintaining strong growth

The Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing industry thrives off workplace safety regulations. In 1981, Occupational Safety and Health Administration implemented new requirements to protect all workers in general industry. As a result, new and more stringent regulations have been developed and applied, resulting in sustained demand for personal protection equipment. Revenue growth depends highly on industrial production and construction activity, though, since these downstream markets are the largest purchasers of personal protection equipment. Hence, the economic malaise of recent years that slashed employment across the economy pulled down demand for industry products. Revenue fell in late 2008 and through 2009, but it returned to growth in 2010 and 2011 along with rising industrial activity. Over the five years to 2012, industry revenue is expected to grow at an annualized rate of 2.1% to $2.5 billion, including an increase of 2.0% in 2012.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 3.1 million US workers sustained non-fatal workplace injuries and illness in 2010 (latest information available). More than half of the private industry injury and illness cases reported nationally in involved multiple days away from work, job transfer, or jobs restrictions. According to a 2012 University of California, Davis study, the estimated national annual price tag of occupational injuries and illnesses was $250.0 billion. Given the economic and productivity impact of workplace injuries, more emphasis will be placed on workplace safety going forward. Employers and regulators will increasingly lean on personal safety equipment to reduce the incidence of workplace injury. Over the five years to 2012, the number of industry firms is estimated to increase at an average annual rate of 0.9%. According to IBISWorld industry analyst Nima Samadi, the number of firms has experienced subdued growth due to major acquisition activity by the industry's largest players. Additionally, high manufacturing costs and rising prices for plastic materials have created an industry in which nearly one-third of domestic demand is supplied through imports. Over the next five years, imports are expected to continue growing as domestic manufacturers focus on higher-value-added products with increased functionality and design. Rising domestic demand in line with strengthening construction and manufacturing industries will help revenue expand over the five years to 2017.

The Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing industry carries a high level of market share concentration. In 2012, the top four firms will account for roughly 74.7% of industry revenue. This high level of industry concentration is indicative of the scale of the firms operating within the industry. Firms like 3M, Honeywell and Mine Safety Appliances are all large-scale, global conglomerates that operate across a wide variety of industries. These firms are able to leverage their favorable economies of scale to invest heavily in research and development and continually introduce new product lines. “Where the smaller firms in this industry focus on specific markets or specialize in a specific type of personal protective equipment, the industry's largest firms have expanded their respective product portfolios to meet consumer needs across a variety of applications,” says Samadi. Over the next five years, IBISWorld expects industry market share concentration to remain high as the largest firms further expand into new markets by introducing new product lines, leveraging favorable supply contracts and acquiring small, specialty manufacturers. For more information, visit IBISWorld’s Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing in the US industry report page.

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IBISWorld industry Report Key Topics

Firms in this industry manufacture personal protective equipment. This includes protective equipment for hands and feet, face and eyes, ears and the respiratory system. This industry also manufactures ergonomic and fall protection equipment. This industry does not include protective clothing.

Industry Performance
Executive Summary
Key External Drivers
Current Performance
Industry Outlook
Industry Life Cycle
Products & Markets
Supply Chain
Products & Services
Major Markets
Globalization & Trade
Business Locations
Competitive Landscape
Market Share Concentration
Key Success Factors
Cost Structure Benchmarks
Barriers to Entry
Major Companies
Operating Conditions
Capital Intensity
Key Statistics
Industry Data
Annual Change
Key Ratios

About IBISWorld Inc.
Recognized as the nation’s most trusted independent source of industry and market research, IBISWorld offers a comprehensive database of unique information and analysis on every US industry. With an extensive online portfolio, valued for its depth and scope, the company equips clients with the insight necessary to make better business decisions. Headquartered in Los Angeles, IBISWorld serves a range of business, professional service and government organizations through more than 10 locations worldwide. For more information, visit or call 1-800-330-3772.

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Gavin Smith
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