Yamazaki crowned The World's Most Admired Whisky brand 2021

Suntory’s Yamazaki has topped the inaugural edition of Drinks International’s The World’s Most Admired Whiskies which launched on 21 October.

Lucas Bols and Edrington enter new venture for Belgium and Luxembourg

Lucas Bols has entered a joint venture with Edrington under the name Maxxium BeLux for distribution in Belgium and Luxembourg.

Pernod Ricard invests in Luc Belaire producer Sovereign Brands

Pernod Ricard has taken a minority stake in the New York-based wine and spirits producer Sovereign Brands.

Cachaça: Breaking out of Brazil

For many drinkers outside of its native Brazil, cachaça is a largely mysterious category, perhaps known as the star of a Caipirinha and nothing more. In its homeland, however, cachaça’s popularity borders on religious.

Surge in hard seltzer brands slow uptake

It has been a sobering quarter for hard seltzers. Sales of the canned RTD that disrupted the US alcohol market when it burst on to the scene in 2016 have finally stalled.

Villa Maria finds buyer after nine-month search

Marlborough-based wine producer Indevin has signed a conditional agreement to buy Villa Maria from parent company FFWL.

Diageo sees a strong future for direct-to-consumer sales

Diageo expects direct-to-consumer sales to grow rapidly and emerge as an important part of the business in the years ahead.

White Claw lays out international expansion plans

It’s been a sobering quarter for hard seltzer. Sales of the canned RTD that disrupted the US alcohol market when it burst onto the scene in 2016, have for the first time, stalled.

James Rackham: The journey of Daddy Rack

Outside I’ve got a five-litre, left-hand drive Mustang. That’s right, I watched The High Chaparral, I love everything American. So to make an American whiskey was a dream come true.”

Tequila's calling for celebrity mixto

Stars continue to flock to give their endorsement to 100% agave brands, but sustainability has become an issue as consumer demand has risen.

How the industry has changed since travel limits

Nick Strangeway looks at how travel restrictions have left a permanent impression on the global bar trade.

Pernod says wine business will not meet Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc demand

Pernod Ricard says its New Zealand wine brands Brancott Estate and Stoneleigh will be unable to meet global Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc supply this year after one of the smallest New Zealand harvests in 10 years.

Edrington and Beam Suntory announce equity swap for UK and Spanish businesses

Spirits giants Edrington and Beam Suntory have agreed to an equity swap of stakes in their jointly-owned distribution companies in Spain and the UK.

Poland and Italy drive sales growth for Stock Spirits

Stock Spirits Group increased volume sales by 2% to 8.3 million 9-litre cases in the six months to March 31.

Kirker Greer Spirits gains French distribution deal

Kirker Greer Spirits has launched in France after securing a deal with wine and spirits importer, Maison Milhade.

Bacardí opens duty free whisky boutique in China

Bacardi’s global travel retail department has opened a luxury seasonal boutique for its whisky portfolio in China.

Becky Davies: “Tequila is the real deal and that’s why it’s so exciting"

Drinks International caught up with Becky Davies, head of commercial at Ten Locks, to learn more about the firm's plans to kickstart a defining era for tequila in the UK.

Distell enters China distribution deal with Camus

South African wines and spirits producer Distell International has signed a distribution agreement with French cognac house Camus for China duty free, effective immediately.

World's Most Admired Wine Brands 2021 to be revealed on April 1

The World’s Most Admired Wine Brands 2021 will be revealed in a countdown on YouTube from 6pm GMT on April 1.

Champagne Lanson enters new US deal with Terlato Wine Group

Terlato Wine Group has announced an exclusive sales and marketing agreement with Champagne Lanson to become effective April 1, 2021.

Diageo purchases Lone River Ranch Water producer

Diageo has maintained its acquisition drive by snapping up the firm that produces the Lone River Ranch Water hard seltzer brand.

Becky Paskin: Whisky industry needs more female marketing

Global campaign OurWhisky is calling for whisky makers to improve female representation in marketing after conducting a new study on gender equality within the industry.

Louis Roederer crowned The World’s Most Admired Champagne Brand 2021

Louis Roederer has been crowned The World’s Most Admired Champagne Brand for the second year in a row.

BBC Spirits imports several leading British brands

French distributor BBC Spirits has bolstered its portfolio with several UK spirits brands as it bids to drive growth in 2021.

Pernod Ricard sales suffer -3.9% drop through travel retail absence

Pernod Ricard sales for H1 FY21 have shown an organic decline of -3.9% on the previous year largely due to the ongoing struggles of travel retail.

Luxco subject to near $0.5bn acquisition by MGP Ingredients

MGP Ingredients has agreed a deal to acquire US spirits company Luxco for a value of $476m in cash and stock.

JW Filshill acquires Eldorado Tonic Wine

JW Filshill, the Glasgow-based wholesaler, has acquired Eldorado Tonic Wine as part of its purchase of KB Agencies for an undisclosed sum.

Tito's appoints new distributors in Cyprus and Switzerland

Tito’s Handmade Vodka has appointed new distributors for two of its European markets in Switzerland and Cyprus.

Walsh Whiskey expands into eight countries in Eastern Europe

Walsh Whiskey has appointed six new distributors in Eastern Europe in a bid to capitalise upon strong growth in the region.

Hofmeister secures investment from beer industry veterans

The former managing directors of Greene King and Ei Group have invested in Hofmeister after growing excited by its potential to take the world beer category by storm.

Quintessential Brands promotes James Lousada to chief executive

Leading gin producer Quintessential Brands has promoted James Lousada to the role of chief executive.

Quintessential Brands launches festive marketing drive

Quintessential Brands is launching a marketing push across its leading gin brands in the run-up to the festive trading period.

Mocktails Brands appoints Craftwork as UK distributor

Mocktails Brands has appointed Craftwork as its UK distributor in a bid to ramp up sales of its premixed alcohol-free cocktails among British consumers.

Diageo to purchase Aviation Gin in $610m deal

Diageo will purchase Aviation Gin and several sister brands in a deal worth up to $610 million.

Pernod Ricard improves outlook for full-year profits

Pernod Ricard now expects the decline in full-year profits to be less severe than initially anticipated as a result of cost control and resilient sales.

Global Bartending Talent Agency launches with 16 clients

A former Diageo marketing executive has launched the world’s first dedicated talent agency for influential bartenders.

AB InBev claims top spot in the UK sales chart

AB InBev has become the UK’s number one brewer by volume sales since the start of 2020.

Maison Villevert snaps up Celtic Whisky Compagnie

Maison Villevert has acquired craft French distillery Celtic Whisky Compagnie for an undisclosed sum.

Big Interview: Amber Beverage Group CEO Seymour Ferreira

Amber Beverage Group has tipped Australia and China to lead the way as the global drinks industry emerges from the coronavirus crisis.

Zamora Company explains how brand owners can help the on-trade recover

Spanish producer Zamora Company has reported that wine and spirits sales in China have recovered as the country emerges from a sweeping coronavirus lockdown.

Drinks brands impress social media users during coronavirus crisis

Engagement with alcoholic drinks brands on social media has increased by more than 300% during the coronavirus lockdown, according to social analytics agency ListenFirst.

New senior appointment at St Austell Brewery

Cornish independent brewer and pub company St Austell Brewery has announced the appointment of Andrew Turner, to the newly created role of managing director, beer and brands. 

Amaretto: Regaining romance

While amaretto may have a long and somewhat idyllic history, it has done little to capture consumers’ imaginations in recent times. But cocktail culture could be key to changing all that, finds Angel Brown

Scotch blends: Whisky symbiosis

The rise of single malt scotch has dominated whisky conversations on the back of the craft explosion, but blended malts have just as interesting a story to tell, says Shay Waterworth

Beer: Picture this

It’s all about the branding for craft beers trying to get noticed in a crowded marketplace. Shay Waterworth gets under the skin of funky designs

Vodka: A clear winner?

Is it possible to apply the craft approach to vodka? Philip Duff could have had the recipe for success

Brands Report: Pisco

There’s an exciting new entrant in this sector, reports Shay Waterworth

Brands Report: Scotch Whisky

The previously unassailable Johnnie Walker could be showing signs of weakness, finds Hamish Smith

Brands Report: World Whisky

With Irish Whiskey stripped out, other countries get a chance to shine. Hamish Smith does the maths