Companies in this industry manufacture asphalt and tar mixtures for paving and blocks, as well as asphalt shingles, roofing cements, and coatings. Major companies include building materials manufacturers such as Owens Corning, Carlisle, and CertainTeed; segments of large aggregate companies such as CRH (Ireland), Lafarge North America, and Vulcan Materials; and segments of large refined petroleum product companies such as BP, Marathon Petroleum, and Valero.
Demand is determined primarily by the availability of government road building funds and nonresidential and residential construction activity. The profitability of individual companies is strongly dependent on efficient operations. Large companies enjoy economies of scale in purchasing and the ability to invest in technologies that improve efficiency. Small manufacturers can compete through superior customer service and by serving small or rural markets. The US industry is concentrated: the top 50 companies account for about 70% of industry revenue.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major products include asphalt paving mixtures and asphalt blocks (60% of industry revenue), and roofing and saturated materials (40%). Asphalt mix is most commonly needed for new and reconstructed roadways. Asphalt is used to surface more than 90% of US roads and highways.