elastomeric flow control valve

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Elastomeric Flow Control Valve Market

The elastomeric flow control valve is a proprietary technology of the Aptar Group, which markets it under the SimplySqueeze label primarily as a valve for condiments. The available information indicates that it has so far been released only in the US and Brazil and we triangulate that its potential market in those countries is about $627 million. We were unable to discover any regulatory hurdles for this type of valve, nor any competing technologies that have entered the market since the elastomeric flow control valve was introduced in 2014.
Below you will find a deep dive of our findings.
KEY PLAYER
The term "elastomeric flow control valve" results in only 11 Google hits (discounting duplicates), most of them referring to the patent, one pointing to the same article used by the client as an example, and one to an article confirming that Aptar Group produces it under the SimpliSqueeze label. Therefore, we next searched repositories of company data such as Owler to determine Aptar's size and competitors. Since Aptar reports $2.3 billion in revenue, we researched each competitor with revenues of at least $1 billion to see if any produced a dispensing top based on an elastomeric flow control valve or similar technology.
Our research shows that Aptar is currently the only major player--and according to their own estimation, the only player period--in the market using the elastomeric flow control valve, as shown below. For this reason, we will use "elastomeric flow control valve" and “SimpliSqueeze” interchangeably.
APTAR'S COMPETITORS
Bemis produces custom-designed food packaging but does not appear to produce any valves similar to the SimpliSqueeze.
Amcor "is focused on the flexibles and rigid plastics segments" in North America, Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand, but while we found many designs of squeeze bottles (e.g., condiment bottles) and various valves for venting or spraying (e.g., aerosol valves) in their catalogue, none were even vaguely like the elastomeric flow control valve.
Winpak's catalogue is very similar to Amcor's.
SealedAir provides food storage solutions, but nothing analogous to the SimpliSqueeze.
AEP Industries produces polyethylene films, not dispensing containers or valves.
Finally, Coveris' product lineup overlaps with nearly all the above, but they still lack anything analogous to the SimpliSqueeze.
Since none of Aptar's closest competitors have the same product or similar technology, we understand Aptar to be the foremost, and possibly only, producer of the elastomeric flow control valve in their SimpliSqueeze line. This would be in line with their claim that "Elastomeric Flow Control is an Aptar specialty valve technology." While it is possible that a much smaller company, perhaps overseas, is producing this type of valve, for purposes of determining market size we understand Aptar as the only major source for the world market.
MARKET SIZE
Of course, the SimpliSqueeze valve is far from Aptar's only product. We therefore studied Aptar's investors information page and annual reports to attempt to determine how much of the Aptar's revenue comes from the production of elastomeric flow control valves. The most recent annual report indicates that "SimpliSqueeze® elastomeric flow control valve technology for various food, beverage and personal care products" were introduced to the market at large in 2016, though another source indicates that it was actually announced in 2014. The 2016 report shows that net sales revenue came to $2.3 billion in both 2015 and 2016. Sources of revenue (i.e., product lines) are not line-itemed.
The 2017 annual report is not yet available, and the 2017 proxy report does not mention SimpliSqueeze or elastomeric flow control valves at all. The Aptar Fundamentals pages also do not contain revenue by product line. Aptar's newsroom finally provided two key pieces of information: First, that SimpliSqueeze was introduced in 2014; and second, "According to Zenith International, this market is worth over $400 million and has the potential to expand into several regions outside of the U.S. in the near future."
This provides a baseline, albeit an early one that is only for the US. We also know that the SimpliSqueeze has entered the Brazilian market via Heinz. We also have a news item from late 2016 indicating that SimpliSqueeze had been introduced as a pharmaceutical dispensing product, but that article does not indicate that Aptar has any clients in this industry yet.
Since we don't have direct information about the market size for elastomeric flow control valves, we will attempt a rough triangulation.
TRIANGULATING MARKET SIZE
We start with Zenith International's estimation that the US market for SimplySqueeze is worth over $400 million. The most recent population count for the US puts us at 323.1 million individuals. Brazil in turn has a population of 207.7 million. If we assume that the new potential market size is proportional to the population, then this puts SimplySqueeze's Brazilian market size at about $257 million (400 mil x (207.7 / 323.1)).
Quite obviously, the above does not consider Brazil's much lower income per capita. On the other hand, given the high success of Heinz in Brazil with the new packaging (with a market share growth of 23% in volume), and the new application of elastomeric flow control valves in pharmaceuticals in the US, the triangulation still seems reasonable, especially when considered against Aptar's overall revenue.
We therefore triangulate the potential (not necessarily realized) market for elastomeric flow control valves in the two countries in which it has been introduced at $627 million (400 + 257). While this is a rough estimation, it is the best possible given the paucity of data to work from. We believe that attempting to extrapolate the global market based on only two data points, one of which is derived from the other, would be inaccurate and misleading.
REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT
Despite a thorough search, we were unable to determine any regulatory hurdles faced by elastomeric flow control valves. Even the article highlighting its possible use in the pharmaceutical industry makes no mention of receiving or requiring FDA approval.
ALTERNATIVE TECHNOLOGIES
As previously noted, the SimplySqueeze elastomeric flow control valve was only introduced in 2014 and seems to have gained most of its traction in 2016. Despite a thorough search of both Aptar's competitors' websites (see above) and industry press releases, we have found no product currently on the market that could be called an alternative technology.
CONCLUSION
The Aptar Group is currently the only company producing an elastomeric flow control valve, which they market under their SimplySqueeze label. Based on the available data, we triangulate that the potential (not necessarily realized) market in the two countries in which the valve has been introduced, the US and Brazil, is $627 million. There is insufficient data to extrapolate to a possible worldwide market at this time. At present, the elastomeric flow control valve does not appear to face any regulatory hurdles, nor have any competitors introduced an alternative technology to the market.

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