Sales for the year-to-date rose 8.1 per cent (9.4 per cent at fixed exchange rates) while sales for the three months ending 30 September grew 6 per cent to €1.32bn supported by double-digit growth in Eastern Europe, the Americas and Asia. The Germany-based company also benefited from an 11.7 per cent increase in the sales of its flagship brand Nivea over the past nine months. Bad weather in Europe led to disappointing Nivea Sun sales but the development of the re-launched Nivea Hair Care range boosted the brand's performance with the help of its other skin care and deodorant ranges. After consolidating its European production facilities Beiersdorf's operating income rose to €152m from €102m in the same period last year Excluding the cost of this supply chain restructuring, operating income rose at the slower rate of 12 per cent to €158m. Meanwhile, on the back of beneficial business tax reform net profit leapt to €132m from €74m last year. Looking at the results by business segment, sales for the company's consumer division, which represents 84.1 per cent of total group sales, rose by 5.4 per cent for the quarter. Sales at Beiersdorf's consumer goods labelling business, Tesa, which accounts for the remainder of its sales, increased 7 per cent. On a regional basis, European sales rose 3.2 percent to €882m aided by strong double-digit growth in Eastern European and Mediterranean countries. However, European sales figures were hit by the transfer of export sales from Beiersdorf AG (Germany) to its company in Dubai. Sales in the Americas rose 4.8 per cent to €188m while rest of the world sales grew 19 per cent to €176m with Latin America, South Africa and China proving particularly strong growth areas. On the back of Beiersdorf's continued sales growth, the company increased its forecasts for its consumer business, to slightly over 8 per cent at fixed exchange rates. The company anticipates particularly strong growth in China, Russia, Brazil and India. It is also expects growth to come from the continued development of Nivea Hair Care, which launched in France in September and released its Straight and Easy range in 20 European countries in July. In addition, Beiersdorf paid €269.45m in October for an 85 per cent stake in China-based C-Bons Hair Care, which owns the Slek and Maestro brands.