Footwear maker RG Barry Corporation has posted a net loss of $21.7 million for fiscal 2003, widened from a net loss of $11.9m in the previous year.

The Ohio-based company, which announced plans to axe 150 sewing jobs in January, said $2.3m of the loss was incurred from discontinued operations.

CEO Thomas Von Lehman said the disappointing result reflected the need for "significant changes" within the company.

"We have developed a new business model, which focuses on our core customer base and simplifies our product offerings," Von Lehman said.

He said the new model included a phase-out of all Mexican manufacturing operations by end-2004, the reduction of costs associated with internal manufacturing, and the eventual sourcing of all product requirements from third party manufacturers in China.

RG Barry's net sales for the year rose 3.5 per cent to $123.1m, compared with $119m in fiscal 2002.