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Customized TPE and TPU Solutions for Footwear

Trinseo's TPE, TPU, bioplastics and color masterbatches for the footwear industry have a long and successful history, meeting even the highest requirements for aesthetics, lightweight, durability, and sustainability.

For decades, the Trinseo Company API, Applicazioni Plastiche Industriali S.p.A., has been a renowned partner for global footwear manufacturers. Based in Italy and part of Trinseo since 2017, API’s success in soft plastics for footwear is based on a series of groundbreaking solutions and innovative products. One example is the first application of reticulated and expandable polymers, enabling the production of extremely lightweight items with excellent physical-mechanical properties that have been put to great use in sports footwear.

Our experts for soft-touch plastics have also been highly focused on urethane-based TPEs and specific color masterbatches (APICOLOR™) for TPUs. These were developed to supply customers with uniformly finished products meeting the requirements of the luxury fashion and footwear markets' narrow product development timelines.

Consumers in the footwear markets expect comfortable, lightweight and ergonomic shoes that are durable and – above all – fashionable. Yet customers in the footwear industry are also increasingly demanding sustainable, recyclable products for all market segments. In response to this demand and aligned to the global trend towards environmental-friendly materials, Trinseo Company API has created products such as MEGOL™ BIO Bio-based TPS, APINAT™ BIO Biodegradable TPE, and APILON™ 52 BIO Bio-based TPUs as part of a broad bioplastics portfolio. Our bioplastics combine excellent physical-mechanical properties and aesthetics with the commitment that the protection of public health and our environment are fundamental values to be passed on to future generations.

Therefore we can offer a complete portfolio of TPE, TPU and bioplastics to footwear industry customers that require customized solutions and optimum performance. In addition to the bioplastics and the APICOLOR™ Color Masterbatches, the MEGOL™ TPS-SEBS Compounds, APILON™ 52 TPU Polymers and Compounds, and APIFIVE™ EVA-based Compounds provide core properties for all footwear sections including for luxury & lifestyle, sports and work:

  • Aesthetics
  • Wide gloss range; colorability in all color shades; suitable for different graining
  • Lightweight Low density; lower weight compared to thermoset rubber
  • Durability Excellent abrasion and aging resistance (UV, ozone, weather); good compression set and tensile strength enabling long-term dimensional stability
  • Sustainability Recyclability; bio-based and/or biodegradable products available
  • Processability Shorter cycle times compared to rubber processing

Contact our team to learn more about these customizable solutions for aesthetic and high-performing footwear items.