End-customer markets

Gränges has a leading global position in rolled aluminium materials. In rolled products for brazed heat exchangers, Gränges has a clear market leading position, estimated at around 20 per cent globally. The automotive industry accounts for about half of Gränges’ sales, the HVAC industry accounts for around 24 per cent, and other end-customer markets (transformers and food packaging) account for the remaining 26 per cent.

The automotive industry

The automotive industry includes all types of vehicles, from light to heavy duty, as well as hybrid and electric vehicles. Demand for heat exchanger material is strongly linked to global vehicle production and the number of heat exchangers per vehicle, which tends to increase in line with requirements for improved performance and enhanced functionality. A higher share of hybrid vehicles, electric vehicles and vehicles with different types of advanced features, is also positive for the demand of heat exchanger materials. Brazed aluminium heat exchangers represent nearly 100 per cent of the market today.

According to the international research firm IHS, global light vehicle production decreased by 1.0 per cent in 2018, while an average annual growth of 1.8 per cent is expected between 2019 and 2021. The production of electric vehicles is expected to grow, from low volume levels, by 40–60 per cent annually in the coming years, and reach a market share of more than 30 per cent globally in 2025.

The HVAC industry

HVAC include systems for heating, ventilation and air-conditioning, for instance in private homes, and commercial and industrial buildings. Underlying market drivers for heat exchangers in HVAC, regardless of type, are housing starts, consumer confidence, and environmental legislation. Brazed aluminium heat exchangers account for only a small share of the total market. Gränges is a supplier of material to both brazed and mechanically-assembled aluminium heat exchangers, with the strongest position in the Americas, and a global market share of close to 10 per cent.

Other end-customer markets

In North America, Gränges is one of the major suppliers of aluminium foil for food containers and winding material for transformers. Aluminium foil provides a complete barrier to light, oxygen, moisture, and bacteria. These properties make it ideal for food cartons and pouches. Semi-rigid containers are among the most versatile of all types of packaging and are widely used for pre-packaged foods, easily withstanding great differences in temperature from freezing to heating.

A transformer is an electrical device used to increase or decrease the alternating voltages in electric power applications. It consists of two or more coils called windings, which are wrapped around a core. In North America, aluminium plays an important role in the design of electrical distribution and large power transformers thanks to its significant cost and weight advantages versus copper.

The markets for semi-rigid containers and transformer windings made in aluminium are expected to show stable annual growth.