The first ever Drinks Innovation Summit, incorporating the Liquor Retail Summit, took place earlier this week and was hailed a huge success by delegates, sponsors and speakers alike.

Nearly 400 delegates attended the full-day conference and mini-expo at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Sydney and heard from over 50 speakers on topics that included e-commerce, social media marketing, hybrid drinks, smart packaging, Big Data and AI.

Matthew Brennan, a specialist on China, delivered the opening keynote, highlighting some of the extraordinary developments in retail and technology occurring there.

Other speakers included Diageo Australasia managing director David Smith, Bacardi-Martini Australia managing director Mauricio Vergara, acting CEO of Coles Liquor Cathi Scarce, and Accenture’s managing director for retail Michelle Grujin, along with large numbers of craft brewers, distillers and winemakers.

Drinks Innovation Summit is the newest event from Food & Beverage Media, publisher of TheShout and National Liquor News, Australian Hotelier and Bars and Clubs, and was a collaboration with industry body Retail Drinks Australia.

Event organiser and group publisher at Food & Beverage Media Paul Wootton explained his team had worked hard to curate a first-class program with speakers that would provide meaningful insights for attendees. The work had paid off, he said.

“It was a great day: brilliant speakers, hundreds of interested delegates, genuinely useful content. The fact the conference room was still full for the last session of the day speaks volumes about how engaging delegates found the speakers and the topics covered. Everyone had a terrific time.”

Food & Beverage Media would like to thank  the event’s sponsors and supporters without which the day would not have been possible: Garage Beverages, Drinks Adventures, Stone & Wood, Kollaras & Co, Connecting Plots, Bacardi-Martini Australia, Co-Partnership, Norths and Culcha Alcoholic Kombucha.

Below are some visual highlights of the day:

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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