Casual shoe firm Phoenix Footwear Group Inc on Tuesday posted a 2.2 per cent year-on-year climb in fourth quarter net sales of its Trotters and SoftWalk brands to $7.4 million.

The Maine-based company, which last week expressed an interest in buying Antigua Enterprises Inc, added full-year net sales of those brands climbed 5.7 per cent from the year-ago period to $36.2m.

Chairman and CEO James Riedman commented: "We are pleased to announce increased revenues for the fourth quarter and full-year, a significant achievement given that this fall represented one of the most difficult retail seasons in decades.

"This top-line growth highlights the strength and stability of our brands. Looking to 2003, we are focused on increasing the distribution of our Trotters and SoftWalk brands, and are confident that we will continue to post solid top and bottom-line growth."