Footwear and apparel maker Rocky Brands' earnings-enhancing strategy bore fruit with a US$0.7m profit in the company's second quarter.

That compared with a $1.4m loss in the same period last year, with sales up 2.9% to $60.5m.

Wholesale revenues edged up slightly to $42.5m, while retail sales were down marginally at $16.2m. Military sales were $1.8m, compared to $0.3m a year ago.

"Our second quarter performance was highlighted by the successful execution of our continuing strategy to enhance profitability," said chairman and CEO Mike Brooks.

"Due largely to more favourable sell-in terms with our retail partners and better utilisation of our company-owned factories, wholesale gross margins increased 250 basis points," he added.

Rocky Brands also succeeded in controlling costs, reducing the company's opereating expenses by some $2m on the year.