German chemicals and pharmaceuticals giant Bayer, maker of Aspirin painkiller, said on Thursday it is sticking to its forecast of higher full-year sales and profits after a strong third quarter.
"Our group forecast for 2015 is confirmed," said chief executive Marijn Dekkers.
"The Bayer group made further strategic progress and posted strong earnings growth in the third quarter," he said.
In the period from July to September, Bayer clocked up net profit of 999 million euros ($1.1 billion), an increase of 20.9 percent on the year and better than analysts had expected.
Underlying or operating profit grew by 16.3 percent to 1.565 billion euros on a 10.7-percent increase in sales to 11.036 billion euros.
One of the key events for the group in the three-month period was the stock exchange listing of its polymers division, Covestro.
While Bayer had been compelled to scale back its ambitions for the proceeds from the initial public offering (IPO) to 1.5 billion euros from 2.5 billion euros originally targeted, the move would support the group's aim to be "a leading life science company and put us in an even stronger position vis-a-vis our competitors," Dekkers said.
Life sciences cover pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals.
Bayer is nevertheless holding on to a 69-percent stake in the listed Covestro unit.
Looking ahead, Bayer said it "continues to predict that group sales will rise by a low-single-digit percentage," or between one and five percent.
And Bayer's "expectation regarding earnings is largely unchanged," with operating profit set to increase by "a high-teens percentage" or between 15 and 19 percent.