VF Corp. announced its plan to create three global “innovation centers” to speed up the development of “game-changing” products in technical apparel, footwear and jeans. Sharing know-how and research into materials, technologies, consumption trends and other subjects, they will consist of international teams of scientists, engineers and technical designers, most of whom already work for the group's 30-plus brands, including The North Face and Vans. All three innovation centers should become operational by the middle of 2014, generating new synergies among the brands at the R&D stage. The technical apparel innovation center will be based in the new office of VF Outdoor at Alameda, California. The footwear center will be in Timberland's head office in Stratham, New Hampshire. The jeans center will be in Greensboro, North Carolina.