Hamburg-based retail conglomerate Otto Group is predicting online sales growth of 2.5%, well below that of its major ecommerce rivals.

Otto Group, which was traditionally a mail order company and now has a large online retail operation, expects online sales of €6.3bn (£4.6bn) for the year ending February 28.

By comparison, pure -play rivals Zalando and Amazon Germany have posted a 26% and 13% increase in sales respectively.

Otto Group’s German operation, which has more than 100 online shops, forecasts online turnover of around €4.1bn (£3bn), an increase of 3%.

The Otto Group said that despite its furniture, home accessories and electronics sales growing “strongly”, it “could not escape the weak overall market in Germany for textiles, nor the declines in international markets such as Russia and France”.

However, the retail group remains positive for its upcoming financial year.

Otto revealed its expected online sales to coincide with the unveiling of a “high double-digit-million investment” in its venture capital business.

Vice chairman of Otto’s executive board Dr Rainer Hillebrand said: “In the core business we will continue to bundle our strengths in the coming years.

“It is our goal to continue to secure our power of innovation through continuous access to new ideas, promising business models and qualified, entrepreneurially minded talent from the business and technology sectors, and to hold our ground against the competition with successful digital business models.”