Food ingredients group Danisco today (17 March) upped its full-year sales and profit targets after enjoying what its chief executive described as a “strong” third quarter.

Danisco, which is the subject of a US$5.8bn takeover bid from US chemicals company DuPont, swung back into the black in the three months to 31 January.

The firm booked net profit of DKK310m (US$58.3m) for its third quarter, against a net loss of DKK354m a year earlier.

Danisco posted an operating profit of DKK512m, compared to an operating loss of DKK361m in the previous year’s third quarter.

The company’s profit performance was helped by an 18% rise in revenue to DKK3.88bn. Sales were up 9% on an organic basis, while Danisco also benefited from currency exchange and acquisitions. Sales from Danisco’s enablers, cultures, sweeteners and Genencor enzymes divisions all rose.

CEO Tom Knutzen said: “Q3 was a strong quarter for Danisco, with sweeteners back on track, new earnings levels reached in Genencor and cultures and an exceptional peak cycle performance in enablers, where we are now entering a new and more challenging phase due to substantial raw material price inflation.”

For the full year, Danisco now expects annual revenues of over DKK15.5bn, compared to its previous forecast of DKK15.3bn.

The company is targeting EBIT – excluding the impact from its bio-chemicals projects – of over DKK2.4bn. Its last forecast was DKK2.2-2.3bn.

Net profit, meanwhile, is forecast to climb to DKK1.35bn. Danisco’s previous target was DKK1.3bn.

DuPont’s takeover offer, which has been backed by the Danisco board, is set to expire on 1 April.

Reports in Denmark have suggested that not all Danisco shareholders believe the DuPont offer adequately values the business.

Shares in Danisco were up 0.3% at DKK662 at 11:21 CET.

Click here for the full third-quarter statement from Danisco.