LaCrosse Footwear reported second quarter sales increased 8% to $30.0 million, up from $27.8 million a year ago. Net income was $1.7 million, or 26 cents a share, up 15% from $1.4 million or 22 cents, a year ago.

For the second quarter of 2009, gross margins were a record 40.8% of net sales, up from 40.4% in the same period of 2008. The increase in gross margins was primarily due to lower markdown sales in the quarter and improved production efficiencies in the company’s domestic factory.
Work sales for the footwear manufacturer, which accounted for 73% of total sales,  grew 25.5% to $21.8 million from $17.4 million in the year-ago period. On a conference call with analysts, management for LaCrosse attributed the spike in sales to increased shipments related to sales to the US military.

Outdoor sales, which accounted for the remaining 27%, fell 22.1% to $8.1 million from $10.5 million a year ago. Management said the decline was due to continued softness in the retail market and the bankruptcies of two major retail customers.

Regarding the recent acquisition of Environmentally Neutral Design Outdoor, Inc., or END footwear, management for LaCrosse said the company expects the END brand to strengthen the spring business while tapping new potential for the youth and female demographics.