USA – US spirits major Beam Suntory has posted net sales of US$6.47 billion in its third-quarter results, up 3.9% from the corresponding period last year.

The company has said that strong performance by its bourbon brands had led to ‘even faster growth’ for its Jim Beam Black, while also seeing ‘excellent initial results’ for its recently launched Jim Beam Vanilla, launched in August.

There was also growth in Suntory’s Japanese spirits unit, Suntory Spirits, which increased sales by 5% from the same period last year.

In the third quarter of 2017, Bourbon brands Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark grew case volumes at a double-digit rate globally.

Jim Beam’s performance was led by strong consumer demand for the brand’s white label expression, with “even faster growth” for Jim Beam Black and “excellent initial results” for the recently launched Jim Beam Vanilla.

Hornitos Tequila continued its strong growth, and the company’s super-premium Bourbons, Sipsmith gin, and ready-to-drink (RTD) products grew volumes at double-digit rates globally.

Strategic brands Jim Beam and Torys (Classic) each delivered strong growth, with Jim Beam in Japan boosted by accelerated marketing activities behind the Beam Highball, both on-premise and in the RTD format.

Suntory Spirits’s RTD portfolio also witnessed 11% increase in case volumes. -196C Strong Zero’s continued rapid growth was attributed to food pairings with the brand.

For the full year, the company anticipates net sales of US$29.3 billion (up 2.6% year on year) and operating income of US$1.8 billion (up 1.5% year on year).

It also expects net income attributable to owners to hit US$624 million (down 41.6% year on year).