The industry-wide downturn in the apparel and footwear sector impacted negatively on clothing and boot retailer RM Williams, which posted a pre-tax was loss of $123,000 for the year ended 1 July 2001.

After tax, the loss grew to $607,000 compared with a profit of $2,559,000 in the previous period. Sales grow by 3 per cent.

In a statement, the company said that the Olympic Games held in September 2000 did not generate the immediate sales to tourists or Australians that was anticipated.

However, it added that interest in Australia and Australian-made products has progressively increased around the world and the company is now benefiting from the Games exposure.