Sportswear company Puma has upped its full-year earnings prediction after reporting strong US sales during the third quarter of the year.

Third-quarter net income rose €91.9 million, on a sales increase of 16.4 per cent. US and Asian sales were especially strong, but Europe, the Middle East and Africa also saw sales rise 5 per cent.

Puma, which previously forecast net profit to grow at a mid to high single-digit percentage rate in 2005, now expects a high single-digit rate.

The company, which believes football-related products will shoot up in the run-up to next year's World Cup tournament, now expects sales to grow by more than 10 per cent for the year.