Sara Lee Corporation yesterday announced several management changes, which are a result of the company's ongoing reshaping program and organizational streamlining.

"As we continue to reshape and narrow the focus of our business portfolio, we also are examining our organizational structure to create a more efficiently managed company that is better positioned for growth," said C. Steven McMillan, president and chief executive officer of Sara Lee Corporation.

In Europe, Sara Lee is reorganizing its Intimates and Underwear management structure in order to accelerate synergies among the European business units, while eliminating a layer of management. To that end, Sara Lee will consolidate the four major continental Europe intimate apparel companies - DIM, Playtex, Lovable and Sans - into a group led by Jacques Michaud, CEO of DIM. Brian Duffy will continue to serve as CEO of Sara Lee/Courtaulds and Legwear Europe. Michaud and Duffy will report directly to Paul J. Lustig, worldwide CEO of Sara Lee Intimates and Underwear and executive vice president of the corporation, thereby eliminating the European apparel group CEO position.

In the United States, Sara Lee's hosiery, sock and direct operations will be combined into a new Sara Lee Legwear and Direct Group to leverage the complementary functions and strategies among the three businesses. Richard A. Noll, Group CEO of Sara Lee Sock Company and Direct, and a vice president of the corporation, will be appointed to the newly created position of Group CEO of Sara Lee Legwear and Direct.

The organizational changes in Europe and the United States are effective July 1.

In addition, two members of Sara Lee's corporate senior management team will retire by the end of the calendar year. Gary C. Grom, senior vice president - human resources for Sara Lee Corporation, who for 12 years has led the corporation's human resources function, will retire in the fall. Lee A. Chaden, who currently serves as CEO of Sara Lee Branded Apparel - Europe and is a senior vice president of the corporation, will succeed Grom as senior vice president - human resources. After 25 years in senior finance and development roles, Mark J. McCarville, senior vice president - corporate finance for Sara Lee Corporation, will retire Dec. 31, 2001.

In May 2000, Sara Lee announced a strategic reshaping plan to narrow the company's focus on three branded consumer packaged goods segments - Food and Beverage, Intimates and Underwear, and Household Products - in which the company enjoys leading category positions around the world. Through the reshaping of its business portfolio, Sara Lee will become a more competitive company with a focused vision, and increased financial and management resources to apply toward the future growth of its remaining positions.

Sara Lee Corporation (www.saralee.com) is a global branded consumer packaged goods company with approximately $17.5 billion in annual revenues. Its leading brands include Sara Lee, Douwe Egberts, Hillshire Farm, Hanes and Playtex.