SOURCE: Freedonia Group, Inc.

October 10, 2006 10:11 ET

Global Battery Demand to Approach $74 Billion in 2010

CLEVELAND, OH -- (MARKET WIRE) -- October 10, 2006 -- Worldwide primary and secondary battery demand is projected to rise at a nearly 7 percent annual pace through 2010 to $73.6 billion. China will record the largest gains of any national market, stimulated by healthy economic growth, ongoing industrialization efforts and rising per capita income. Annual demand in the country will climb by more than $7 billion from 2005 to 2010, and China will surpass the U.S. to become the largest battery market in the world. Sales increases are also expected to be strong in India, Indonesia, South Korea, Poland, South Africa, Brazil and Russia for similar reasons. These and other trends are presented in "World Batteries," a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

Although the rate of growth will be less robust than in developing parts of the world, battery demand in the U.S., Western Europe and Japan will accelerate through 2010. Market gains in these areas will be fueled by largely favorable economic conditions and higher income levels, leading to increased use of a wide variety of battery-powered products. Renewed growth in motor vehicle production will also contribute to battery sales growth in the U.S. and Western Europe.

Non-lead-acid secondary battery market gains will outpace demand for primary and lead-acid secondary batteries through 2010. Sales of lithium ion and lithium polymer batteries and, to a lesser extent, nickel-metal hydride batteries will be spurred by the immense popularity of electronic devices such as cell phones and portable digital audio players. Primary battery demand will also rise, driven by increased use of electrical and electronic products traditionally powered by primary batteries. Lead-acid battery sales will expand as well, benefitting from rising automotive output and growing demand in applications like uninterruptible power supplies.

Consumer battery demand will outperform other market segments through 2010 as global economic conditions improve and income levels climb. Sales of batteries used in industrial and other applications will also be healthy, stimulated by increases in fixed investment spending and total manufacturing output, particularly in developing areas. Automotive battery demand will be fueled by an acceleration in motor vehicle production, but market gains will lag growth in overall battery demand, restrained by intense price competition and the maturity of most developed world markets.

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