While polyisobutene commands respect for its versatility across a slew of global industries, including lubricants, it rarely grabs headlines. It pops up occasionally to assert its place as the heir apparent to bright stock when supplies seem to be under threat, but has otherwise kept a steady beat in the market.
A recent rise in capacity points to increasing demand for PIB-not from blenders searching for a bright stock replacement, but from a growing thirst for lubricant additives, according to Kline & Co.
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The Parsippany, New Jersey-based consultancy forecasts that PIB capacity will reach 1.3 million metric tons per year by 2028, an increase of about 8 percent. But demand may not grow as quickly as supply, resulting in lower utilization rates in the short- and mid-term, Klines Hareesh Nalam said during a webinar.