Liz Claiborne Inc is to rename its Niki Taylor branded apparel line as Meg Allen, for its Autumn 2001 collection.

The company announced today that the decision to rename the line had been agreed upon by Liz Claiborne, exclusive suppliers Target Stores and Niki Taylor. The renaming will not change deliveries or revisions of projected sales.

Commenting on the announcement, Ms Taylor said: "I've enjoyed my association with Liz Claiborne for many years, but feel it is important that I have the flexibility to broaden my professional activities. Unfortunately, the marketing of a major apparel brand requires more day-to-day involvement than I initially realised. In discussions with people at Liz Claiborne, we agreed that it would be best to end our relationship prior to the all-store roll out."

Paul R. Charron, chairman, chief executive officer of Liz Claiborne Inc, said: "Although we are sorry to lose the association with Niki Taylor, preliminary results and research indicate that we nevertheless have the right ingredients for success in place.

"The line's femininity, versatility and easy styling are resonating with Target guests, and we will build on this positioning with Meg Allen. Our partnership with Target is central to our commitment to reach consumers wherever they choose to shop and whatever their style and value preferences."