Riley will report to Thierry Billot, Pernod Ricard deputy managing director in charge of Brands. Richard's retirement comes after 35 years with the company.
The appointment has set off a number of appointments within the sector. Eric Benoist, who is currently marketing director at Martell Mumm Perrier-Jouët, will replace Riley.
Anne-Claire Rodary, currently senior marketing category director at Pernod Ricard will replace Benoist.
Riley started his career at Sandeman, before moving to James Burroughs plc and later on Whitbread.
In 1990, he became marketing vice-president of Allied Domecq until 1997 when he moved to the Pernod Ricard Group at Irish Distillers Limited, as International sales & marketing director.
In 2002 he was appointed international marketing director of Chivas Brothers, the position he is currently holding.