VF Corp today lifted its full-year expectations after recording a strong third-quarter performance.

The company, which owns the North Face, Wrangler and Timberland brands, among others, said today (22 October) that it expects full-year adjusted earnings per share to reach approximately US$9.60 per share, up from the $9.50 it forecast in July.

The improved forecast came as the clothing and footwear group recorded a 26.8% increase in net income to reach US$381.3m. Over the quarter, ended 29 September, revenue rose 14% to reach $3.1bn. Organic sales grew 2%, which the group attributed to continued strength in the outdoor and action sports, international and direct to consumer businesses.

Gross margin rose 140 basis points to a record 46.7%, reflecting improvements in nearly every business combined with the company's continued shift towards higher margin businesses.

"Our third quarter results clearly demonstrate VF's unique competitive advantages - diversity across brands, geographic regions and channels; powerful brands that resonate with consumers; and business disciplines that enable the consistent, successful execution of our growth strategies," said Eric Wiseman, VF chairman and chief executive officer.

"We are confident in our ability to deliver a very strong fourth quarter across our businesses, supported by higher levels of strategic investments in key brands and markets that are proven drivers of both top and bottom line growth."