Investment in asphalt plants needed, research finds

16/05/2016
Highways Reporters

More than half of currently operating asphalt plants in Great Britain are more than 20 years old, according to research carried out by BDS Marketing.   

Of these, more than a half are over 30 years old. “Many of these plants were installed in the 1980s and early 1990s and will need investment to ensure continued operational efficiency,” notes report author, Andy Sales. “Our research suggests that 140 asphalt plants are affected, being more than 20 years old.”

This information is contained within a comprehensive market analysis published by BDS in May 2016, entitled: ‘The asphalt industry in Great Britain – its structure, markets and prospects’.

The industry has seen a welcome return to growth over the past three years. Production in 2015 was 24 million tonnes. However, output remains below historical trends. There has been a significant reduction in the market in the first quarter of 2016. BDS believes that this is a short-term trend before recovery towards the end of the year. The consultancy has identified a number of infrastructure projects which will benefit asphalt producers in the future.

BDS also found that there are 20% less plants operating today than there were in 2000. Production is increasingly being concentrated at a small number of larger volume sites.

The top five asphalt companies continue to represent a significant part of the market, with BDS estimating their share at 80% - Tarmac, Aggregate Industries, Hanson, Cemex and Breedon. However, the consultancy has identified several independent companies establishing an important foothold in the market.

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