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Beam Inc has opened an innovation centre as it targets achieving a quarter of its annual sales growth from new products.

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The Jim Beam maker will invest US$30m in the multi-year project along with a new visitors centre, also opened yesterday (3 October). The 5,300-square-metre 'Global Innovation Center', located just outside Louisville, Kentucky, features R&D and design labs and will fuel Beam's product development around the world, the company said.

"We aim to deliver 25% of our company's annual sales growth from new products, and our new 'Global Innovation Center' will help ensure our innovation capabilities remain second to none," Beam president & CEO Matt Shattock said.

The visitors' centre is a replica of a 1930s stillhouse and will educate tourists on the Bourbon-making process. “It's only fitting that we're opening the doors to our new Jim Beam visitors' experience one year to the day after becoming a publicly-traded standalone spirits company," Shattock said.

On 4 October last year, Fortune Brands changed to Beam Inc after completing the spin-off its home and security division. The move left Beam as a pure-play spirits company.


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