has reported a strong start to trading in July as the housing market picks up after a “muted” first quarter for the etailer.

The online electricals retailer grew UK revenue 6.5% for the quarter ending June 30, with online orders up 13.9%.

Growth was affected by “particularly intense competitive activity in the market” that was compounded by general election uncertainty. reports July is off to a strong start after growth in housing transactions and disposable income.

The retailer added that customer loyalty “continues to increase” and as a result repeat business is improving. It added sales are building “satisfactorily” in Germany. chairman Richard Rose said the business was “on track with its long-term strategic progress”.

Brand awareness

The retailer’s key focus this financial year is building brand awareness and it has hired Karmarama as its ad agency to achieve this. has entered into a 10-year lease for a new European distribution facility in Bergheim, near Cologne, which will move in to in the first half of financial year 2017.

The 376,700 sq ft warehouse and head office will replace two existing sites and will support expansion into countries neighboring Germany. could face shareholder unrest at its AGM today after advisory service ISS called on shareholders to vote against independent non-executive Chris Hopkinson, while PIRC has recommended voting against Rose.