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Group Manager - Global R&D - Ready to Drink & Flavored Spirits

Date: Sep 11, 2022

Location: Clermont, KY, US

Company: Beam Suntory

Beam Suntory is Crafting the Spirits that Stir the World. Rooted in two centuries of family heritage, Beam Suntory has evolved into the world's third largest leading premium spirits company ... where each employee is treated like family and trusted with legacy. With our greatest assets - our premium spirits and our people - we're driving growth through impactful marketing, innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit. Beam Suntory is a place where you can come Unleash your Spirit by making an impact each and every day.



Group Manager - Global R&D - Ready to Drink & Flavored Spirits  


The following position is open in Clermont KentuckyUnited States.


What makes this a great opportunity?

​​​​​​This position reports to the Director of RTD & Flavored Spirits within Global R&D and will lead a team of product developers. This leadership role will spearhead the creation of innovative consumer and customer driven new products/platforms, quality improvements and cost savings, to drive Beam Suntory profitable growth and business success. This position will partner with marketing and innovation partners on specific category initiatives and lead a team responsible for helping to bring these initiatives to life.  This leader will partner within the full RTD & Flavored Spirits team on resourcing, building capabilities, and growing the function as a whole.  This position provides broad exposure to operations, marketing/business teams, finance, sourcing and other internal and external partners, providing R&D support on cross functional teams for formulated Full Bottle Spirit and Ready to Drink products.


  • The spirits industry is an exciting, dynamic, and fast-paced business.  Beam Suntory is a top player in the spirits business and focused on driving both category and brand growth 
  • This is a key leadership role with responsibility to further develop RTD capabilities alongside cross-functional teams and external agencies to drive a key strategic priority for Beam Suntory.
  • Ability to work closely with internal cross-functional teams to help create and commercialize products and processes
  • This person is a key partner for Brand House projects and category management, with autonomy to support decision making
  • Opportunity to provide global category, development, and production expertise and provide input into strategies to capitalize on the growth of RTDs and formulated Full Bottle Spirits.


Role Responsibilities

  • Direct leadership of 3+ direct reports including technical leadership, goal setting, coaching and personal development. 
  • Proactively lead and drive a culture of problem solving to fit the cross-functional needs of the team and the business. 
  • Leverage consumer insights and emerging technologies to guide product innovation and renovation plans. 
  • Manage a complex and dynamic project portfolio to ensure attainment of business goals, including prioritization and agile processes to meet needed timelines. 
  • Actively partner with external suppliers and development companies to extend product possibilities and identify, evaluate and implement new enabling technologies and raw materials. 
  • Bring a strong technical and business understanding of the competitive set, supplier base and adjacencies, emerging technology, as well as on and off premise practices, trends and other external changes that could influence industry and product direction.  Proactively bring forward new ideas from this learning for business plans and to drive new idea potential. 


Qualifications & Experience

  • M.S Food Science or related preferred with 8 years experience, or B.S. degree with 10+ years experience. 
  • Minimum 6 years work experience in food and/or beverage industry.  Experience in research initiatives and in ready to drink alcoholic beverages or carbonated soft drinks a plus. 
  • Demonstrated experience in direct leadership of a team (preferred) or mentorship of junior team members. 
  • Team player with cooperative, collaborative style supported by good listening and partnering skills.  Culturally sensitive, with ability to work in a global multicultural cross functional organization, requiring ability to work effectively across cultures, time zones to accommodate global responsibilities. 
  • Desire to build and maintain a diverse, equitable and inclusive culture within Global R&D and broader Beam Suntory.
  • Ability to travel globally to partner in project work with internal and external clients, as well as support implementation at Beam Suntory facilities – travel approx. 10-30% with half local Kentucky operations and NYC/Chicago corporate offices, and balance other Beam Suntory locations. *As COVID restrictions allow.
  • Physically fit for work in a lab, pilot plant and manufacturing environment, which includes long periods of standing, moving, and carrying or lifting up to 50 pounds.
  • Must be able to taste limited quantities of alcoholic beverage samples in accordance with evaluation/research needs.
  • Must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 & able to provide supporting documentation. Ability to work in office at least ~60% of time, balancing work from home, as business needs require




At Beam Suntory, people are our number one priority, and we believe our people grow together in diverse and inclusive environments where their unique insights, experiences and backgrounds are valued and respected. Beam Suntory is committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, gender identity, military veteran status and all other characteristics, attributes or choices protected by law. All recruitment and hiring decisions are based on an applicant’s skills and experience.

Nearest Major Market: Louisville