The president and CEO of LaCrosse Footwear has remained upbeat despite the company reporting a loss for its first half of the year.

For the first half of 2011, the net loss was $0.8m, compared to net income of $1.8m in the same period of 2010. The half-year loss came after a second-quarter net loss of US$0.2m, compared to net income of $0.1m in the same period last year. 

LaCrosse's top line also worsened in the first half of 2011, with net sales at $52.2m, down from the $60.8m in the same period of 2010.

However, the US group said that net sales for the most recent quarter reached $27.1m, up 2% from $26.6m in the second quarter of 2010.

It also pointed out that, excluding the government channel, the company's combined sales to its wholesale, direct and international channels increased 13% in both the second quarter and the first half of 2011 compared to the same periods in 2010.

"Aside from continuing quarterly fluctuations in US military orders, our business is performing well, with strong growth across our wholesale, direct and international channels," said president and CEO Joseph Schneider. "Our sales to the outdoor market continue to be very robust, as our relationships with major retailers have continued to strengthen and we expand into their new retail stores. We see strong demand for both our core work and outdoor products, and our newest products for Fall 2011 are being very well received, including our innovative retooling of classic Danner designs in our new Stumptown series."

Sales to the work market were $17.6m in the second quarter of 2011, down 5% from the same period of 2010, reflecting a reduction of contract orders from the US military and the company's decision in 2010 to discontinue its work apparel products.

Schneider added: "As we move into the second half of 2011, we are executing our strategic plan and benefitting from the key investments and initiatives that we've made in recent years. Our stronger sales organisation and distribution infrastructure continues to deepen our wholesale channel relationships, both in the US and internationally. Our enhanced e-commerce platforms continue to expand our direct business, and our talented development team continues to introduce a wide range of innovative new products for Spring 2012.