Short-term loans at Pegasus International Holdings, a licensed manufacturer of Nike shoes, more than doubled to $92 million last year, financial controller Derek Lee Yiu-ming said. The loans resulted from heavy investment in the company's production facilities in Pangyu. Mr Lee said inner reserves and the proceeds of a $182 million flotation last October would be used to pay off the debts. The company maintains a healthy gearing ratio of 3.7 per cent, based on $105 million cash on hand and $121 million outstanding debts. Chairman Thomas Wu Chen-san said Pegasus expected sales to grow at least 30 per cent this year after a 54 per cent jump in turnover to $941 million last year. Net profit leaped 99 per cent to $129 million last year, of which about 66 per cent was generated by Nike products. 'We're on the way to achieving our target according to sales growth figures in the first two quarters,' he said. Sales in the first quarter rose 43 per cent to US$40.14 million. Orders on hand in the second quarter rose 47 per cent to $35 million.