Welcome to the latest edition of Just Drinks’ digital magazine.

It will come as little surprise to hear M&A watchers say 2022 has been a subdued year for the drinks industry – and 2023 looks set to be another muted 12 months. 

There was a burst of deal-making in 2021 as confidence returned to the markets after the depths of the pandemic and, going into 2022, there was optimism that level of activity might persist. 

However, with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine upending the global economy and puncturing business (and consumer) confidence, this year looks set to be more low-key and, in a wide-ranging spotlight feature, Just Drinks sat down with bankers to discuss their thoughts about the year ahead. 

Elsewhere, we looked at the changing shape of craft-beer M&A in the US, analysed why Pernod Ricard’s recent deal-making may give it a boost Stateside and reported back from our latest conference, which discussed the outlook for non-alcoholic drinks. 

Dean Best, managing editor