2020 Market Overview


Aluminium Composite Panels

A2 Fire Rated material
Council for Aluminium in Building
Aluminium Composite Panels in the UK

The global Aluminium Composite Panels market size was valued at USD 5.34 billion in 2018 and is expected to exhibit a CAGR of 6.4% from 2018 to 2025. Increasing the application scope of lightweight aluminium composite panels in the construction industry for insulation is projected to drive the market over the forecast period. These composite panels provide features, such as lower thickness, high insulation, and superior sealing, which are crucial for building structures.

Also, ACPs offer excellent air and water barrier, flexibility, high load performance, and durability, which is expected to positively impact market growth over the forecast period.

Sandwich panels are majorly used in the design and construction of transportation systems, such as aircraft, satellites, missiles, and high-speed trains, to reduce the structural weight. Aluminium composites are used for the manufacturing of sandwich panels, thereby propelling the market growth over the forecast period. Furthermore, technological advancements in the manufacturing process of ACP sheets and panels are expected to have a significant impact on the overall market.

The growing popularity of green buildings is also projected to fuel product demand on account of eco-friendly characteristics of these materials. Several regulations and safety standards, such as LEED and British Safety Standards, govern the building and structure and also favour the incorporation of ACPs. Also, ACPs provide high tensile strength and reduce the overall weight of the building structure, which makes them one of the potential materials for the modern construction industry.

Product Insights

PVDF panels led the market in 2018 accounting for a share of over 34.4% owing to a wide range of applications including lightweight construction, high-speed trains, and advertisement boards. Also, their features, such as corrosion and wear resistance and durability, are expected to benefit the segment growth. PE panels are also among the majorly used products owing to properties, such as extreme rigidity, surface flatness, smoothness, and thermal as well as acoustical insulation. It is expected to register notable growth in the future due to benefits, such as easy fabrication and processing.

Laminating coating ACPs are manufactured through multi-layer extrusion lamination and primarily used for lamination applications in the construction industry. This segment is projected to witness a CAGR of 5.9% on account of properties offered by the product, such as longevity, durability, high tolerance, and easy installation, thereby positively impacting the market growth.

The use of oxide film in the production of ACPs provides several advantages, such as fire protection and UV, corrosion, and acid resistance. These properties are crucial in the construction and automotive industries. Thus, this is also estimated to boost market development.

Aluminium Composite Experts in the UK

Application Insights

aluminium composite panels

Construction application is expected to register the highest CAGR of 7.2% during the forecast years. Also, eco-friendly characteristics offered by the product is expected to increase its demand in green buildings, thereby propelling market growth. Benefits, such as thermal & acoustic insulation and corrosion resistance offered by the product are also expected to fuel their demand in the modern construction industry. Also, rising product use in decorative and cladding applications to meet transition energy and building standards is likely to augment the segment growth product over the next few years.

Rapidly expanding advertising, marketing, and mass media industry worldwide has resulted in increased expenditure on the advertising boards. ACPs are broadly used for these boards as they are subjected to extreme environmental conditions, such as humidity, moisture, and temperature fluctuations, and pollution. The railway application segment is also projected to witness considerable growth. Moreover, these composites help reduce the overall weight of trains resulting in improved speed and reduced power consumption.

Aluminium Composite Panels

Market Share Insights

The global market is highly competitive as major companies focus on the development of advanced products with superior characteristics and also demonstrate their brand strength through well-known trademarked products. Production capacity expansion and product customizations are also expected to be among the key strategic initiatives adopted by these companies to gain competitive advantages. The global companies in developed regions like North America and Europe are facing strong price competition from Chinese manufacturers. Arconic, Inc.; Mitsubishi Plastics, Inc.; Hyundai Alcomax Co., Ltd.; Fairfield Metal LLC; and Jyi Shyang Industrial are some of the leading companies in the market.

The UK Market and Challenges post Grenfell

Speaking to numerous fabricators, distributors and fellow competitors in the industry.

The UK is facing a change in trend, ACM / ACP (Aluminium Composite Material) has since the Grenfell disaster become a series of words associated with concern.  The UK Market estimated to be worth 1’000’000 m2 per anum has been hit hard by bad publicity and a lack of technical expertise and education in understanding the various fire ratings available.


With additional test requirements and improved through the wall tests such as BS8414 to ensure not only building regulations are met but that standards improve to ensure the safety of cladding and façade designed buildings.

EN13501 - A2 Fire Rating

There has been a clear rule that Non-combustible materials are the key to avoiding future repeats of such horrific incidents and thus ensuring improved compliance and safety in our UK Building Regulations

EN13501 – A2 is fast becoming the preferred UK fire testing standard. Now the non-combustible A2 core is the only choice in ACM, offering the 4mm thick panels to provide the flexibility to achieve excellent design capabilities.  

This is supported by outstanding ease of fabrication options whilst still offering outstanding value for an infinite range of colours and textures.

More recently though the suggestion of “A” rated materials, the market has seen approximately 300’000m2 of material converted to an imported product from https://www.luxecoat.it/en/ in Italy providing an A1, 3mm solid Aluminium panel.  This has not only affected fabrication but equally impacting the results on buildings though an increased price point upwards of 20 % to the market leaders Alucobond and Alpolic.

Of course, product evolution is the key and both 3A Composites and Alpolic are fast reacting to offer an increased standard to the 4mm (0.5) material achieving the EN13501 A1 rating.

Why… Was Architectural ACM not designed 30+ years ago as a solution to reduce cost, improve fabrication and ensure rigidity with uniform flat surface.  Widely recognised globally with a range of finishes and fabricated solutions. 

Marketing, great specification and fear. Valcan – who import and re-sell this product have done an excellent job in providing Architects, and fabricators with the facts that A1 is a step close to avoiding any combustibility.

There is no actual non-combustible product, over time and at the right temperatures even solid Aluminium itself will melt away.  With A2 the core is mineral and would remain as blackened slab. The UK government now spending Billions to ensure 300+ building are re-clad and made safe for all those concerned.

This is a huge task and the wide range of excellent fabricators in the UK and their contracting partners must form an alliance to cost effectively get the job done.

With a combined force of the reputed and BBA tested manufacturers who factories, are all achieving the essential A2 Fire Rated panels in order to offer like for like on 4mm (0.5) ACM façade cladding.

3A’s Alucobond

Germany / Switzerland


Germany / Japan





There are of course many others including over 300 manufactures in China producing everything from 2mm (0.12) sign grade to the UK’s own MultipanlUK who produce world class sign grade material.


The key is we get this done! 

Coronavirus “cannot be an excuse” for failing to remove unsafe cladding from high-rise blocks almost three years after the Grenfell Tower fire, the shadow home secretary has warned.

Ensuring capacity can be met to the anticipated deadlines and of course done with the required knowledge and expertise to ensure the building regulations are met across a wide range of different projects.

Speaking with Peter Caplehorn Chief Executive of the CPA https://www.constructionproducts.org.uk who elaborated further on the key projects linked to IRG including:

With the IRG’s and Judith Hackitt project in mind to initially offer a service to building owners to identify the type of Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) cladding on high-rise buildings.  

Factors for consideration are price vs quality, availability and capacity to produce.  

Of course, having a selection of approved partners to fabricate and install the materials in question.

BBA and Building Regulations Approval

Due to the revision of BBA certifications in July 2017 after the Hackitt review, this has narrowed down the options substantially.  It imperative that the BBA testing has been done to ensure the select group of products all meet the revised Building Regulations.  In addition to this Brexit may equally play a part in the consistency of supply and with potential increase in duty could make a substile impact on pricing submitted.

Fire Certification

EN13501 – A2-s1-do is a must and only if the building falls below 18 meters can EN13501 – B1-s1-do can be considered.

3 of the Top Fire Testing houses in the UK can provide the necessary Fire testing service.

Fabrication requirements

Processing and capacity Solutions

Processing of A2 panels takes time and needs to be done to the upmost quality.

In order to meet the huge demand with a much higher capacity of fabrication requirements than usually required.  One proposed solution offered being the Alu Ranger, a unique CNC solution engineered in San Marino for faster and more cost-effective Machine routing and Fabrication of the cladding materials in questions.


The Alu Ranger, VGroove can be used by our network of fabricators for a wide range of materials such as: 

• A2 and FR Rated Aluminium Composite Material – 4mm (0.5)
• Pre-Coated Solid Aluminium from 1.5, 3mm through to 8mm thick
• Aluminium Honeycomb
• Fibercement
• Gypsum Board
Aluminium Composite Material Fabrication

The advantages of this unique engineering method include the following “Leasts” way – minimal amount of space and labour, enabling maximum output.

  • Labour Saving – With a patented solution for automation, the entire process can be operated by 1 operator / supervisor.
  • Ergonomics, with automation and working vertically, reducing back strain, substantially reducing labour intensity. Cleaner and safer for the operator with less dust and swarf. Quieter and less energy consumption.
  • Automation – With added features using patented Integrated Automation allowing for panels to be automatically loaded and fed directly onto the flat bed.  Supported by dedicated software optimising the programming for any design, reducing material waste. 
  • Space Saving – Vertical / Upright CNC, requiring 60% less space than conventional CNC routers.
  • Tooling – Multiple options to cover a wide range of V Groove and cutting solutions seamlessly integrated and programable in one operation.  Quality parts from SMC, Yaskawa, Becker, HSD and Schaeffler.  Offering reliability and efficiency of design.
  • Speed – Capable of fabricating 25-30 meters per minute.

With this increased productivity on average 450 – 750m2 of material could be fabricated in one 8-hour shift.  This would enable any project a huge time and labour-saving option.

The solution is there, and we feel it’s time to take the mission to the next level.  With the combination of ACM and CNC Fabrication the possibility to create, innovate and designs reach across so many markets and beyond buildings…

Here is our guide to the range of ACM material available in our market

Architectural Grade

Available in an infinite range of colours and finishes.

  • • Easily fabricated, folded and formed.
  • • High quality PVDF / HDPE / FEVE paint finishes with combined layers for coastal protection and textured finishes.
  • • Offering Exceptional Fire rating up to EN13501 A2-s1-d0

Panel Thickness: 4mm, 6mm

Aluminium Skin: 0.5

Standard sheet sizes: Mostly produced to order or stock formats 1250×3200 / 1500 x 3200

Fabrication Grade

Available in a wide range of colours and finishes.

  • • Easily fabricated, folded and formed.
  • • High quality paint finish with combined options for Matt / Gloss sides.

Examples of applications:

  • • Sign making
  • • Routered sign trays
  • • POS Displays
  • • Transport (Truck bodies, trailers, aviation)
  • • Industrial (Machine covers, industrial & agricultural buildings, internal cladding)

Panel Thickness: 2mm, 3mm, 4mm, 6mm

Aluminium Skin: 0.3 or reduced eco fabrication 0.26

Standard sheet sizes: 1220 x 2440, 1220 x 3050, 1500 x 3050, 1500 x 4050, 2000 x 3050

Flat Application Grade

Available in a range of colours and finishes.

  • • Economical, reduced-weight sheet.
  • • UV resistant for outdoor use.

Designed for non-loadbearing flat applications.

Panel Thickness: 2mm, 3mm, 4mm & 6mm

Aluminium Skin: 0.2

Standard sheet sizes: 1220 x 2440, 1220 x 3050, 1500 x 3050, 1500 x 4050, 2000 x 3050

Digital Print Panel

Digital finish for improved ink adhesion.

  • • Flat, smooth surface perfect for direct print.
  • • Anti-static easy-peel protective film

Panel Thickness: 2mm, 3mm, 4mm & 6mm

Aluminium Skin: 0.2

Standard sheet sizes: 1220 x 2440, 1220 x 3050, 1500 x 3050, 1500 x 4050, 2000 x 3050