NEW YORK — Bonnie Takhar has resigned as president of Earl Jean, as part of a broader change in Earl’s position within parent company VF Corp.

Greensboro, N.C.-based VF acquired Earl in August 2003, as part of its $600 million purchase of Nautica Enterprises. Since the deal closed, Earl had continued to operate as part of the Nautica unit, which is within VF’s Sportswear Coalition.

“The plan is to take the Earl business and incorporate it as part of our overall Jeanswear Coalition,” a VF spokeswoman said Tuesday. “This will allow us to more effectively manage the growth in the Earl Jean brand.”

That unit is headed by Terry Lay, who serves as corporate vice president and coalition chairman. The spokeswoman said the company hadn’t yet determined exactly when Takhar would leave Earl or if her position would be filled.

Asked whether she planned to exit, Takhar said in a brief phone interview, “That is true.” She referred further questions to VF.

VF has made a number of changes in the Nautica business since acquiring it. Last month, it began putting out feelers for a new president of Nautica, filling a void that had been open since the deal closed, when former chairman, president and chief executive officer Harvey Sanders did not come along.

VF also has shuttered the brand’s women’s jeans business, which shipped its final products for summer 2004 retailing. Nautica now produces limited women’s product, making sleepwear in-house and licensing out women’s swimwear, eyewear and watches.

Last week VF disclosed that Paulette McCready had stepped down as president of Nautica Jeans Co. Her duties have been taken over by Christopher Heyn, who already held the title of president of Nautica Sportswear.

The VF spokeswoman added there were no plans to merge the Nautica Jeans Co. business into the Jeanswear Coalition, saying it would remain within the broader Nautica unit.

Takhar was appointed president of Earl Jean in October 2002, after having served as managing director of the brand’s European operations. On her watch, the brand relocated from Los Angeles, where it was founded in 1996, to Manhattan’s Chelsea section.The VF spokeswoman said there were no plans to move Earl to VF headquarters in Greensboro, where Lay is based.

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