Several major players are using over 100,000 tonnes of resin/year and the market share of the largest companies is growing, with the role of private equity investors also increasing, said the report.
The top 50 producers account for nearly 65% of the total European sheet market compared with 56% five years earlier, found AMI.
Klöckner Pentaplast, owned by Strategic Value Partners LLC, Paccor International is part of Sun Capital Partners and VitasheetGroup, TPG Capital are three of the top five firms owned by private equity groups.
AMI estimates that the thermoplastic rigid film and sheet market in Europe reached just over 4 million tonnes in 2012, which matched the 2008 (pre-recession) level, with over 800 sheet production plants operating in Europe.
Klöckner Pentaplast is a supplier of rigid PVC films but also with a growing position in the supply of rigid polyethylene terephthalate (PET) films.
The company has steadily grown through various acquisitions to extend its product portfolio and geographic reach.
Recent acquisitions include MAG Group's Novopac PVC and PVC/PE sheet business in France, the PP and PS mono- and multi-layer rigid film activities of AMB in Italy and the unprinted PET mono- and multi-layer rigid films business of Bemis Packaging Deutschland GmbH.
Paccor close behind
AMI said number two in Europe is Paccor International, which is due to become Exopack Holdings as part of Sun Capital Partners plan to merge its five packaging companies.
Paccor was created by the acquisition and full-scale integration of Huhtamaki's consumer packaging goods business, with Veriplast Rigid and Pannunion in 2011.
The firm is a European supplier of sheet for form fill seal (FFS) applications and it specialises in mono and multilayer sheets in reels including polystyrene (PS) and polypropylene (PP), PET, polylactic acid (PLA) and barrier sheet.
Other groups using in excess of 100,000 tonnes include Groupe Guillin, RPC Group, Linpac and Coexpan.