Riley is handed top Pernod Ricard post

Pernod Ricard has appointed Chivas Brothers international marketing director Martin Riley as its top global marketer.

Riley will take over from Jean-Paul Richard as vice-president of marketing for the spirits company. Richard is retiring after 35 years with Pernod Ricard.

It is thought to be the first time that French-owned Pernod Ricard has appointed a British marketing chief.

He will now be responsible for all Pernod Ricard brands, which also include Absolut Vodka, Jameson, Malibu and Jacobs Creek. It is not known who will take over his responsibilities at Chivas Regal.

Riley joined Chivas Brothers in December 2001 after it was created by Pernod Ricard to house its Scotch whisky business, including the flagship Chivas Regal brand. He was previously sales and marketing director for Irish Distillers, also owned by Pernod Ricard.

Last year, Riley led the global advertising review of Chivas Regal, moving the account from TBWA to Euro RSCG. The Pernod Ricard account is handled by a roster of agencies including Euro RSCG, CHI & Partners, Publicis and M&C Saatchi. Media planning and buying is handled by Vizeum.

Pernod Ricard was formed in 1975 following the merger of rivals Pernod and Ricard. In 2005, the company acquired British-based competitor Allied Domecq and last year it bought Swedish-based V&S Group, including the Absolut Vodka brand.

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