boss John Roberts has hinted the electricals etailer may launch bricks-and-mortar stores if there is customer demand for them.

Roberts has said stores are not in the “current plan” but added the etailer would not rule out opening stores.

He said: “We will continue to deliver what customers want whether that is online or in-store.

“And if we did open stores, one thing is for sure, it would not be on the scale of the store estate that currently exists around this category.”

Roberts’ comments came as reported “muted” first-quarter trading in an increasingly competitive environment following the resurgence of multichannel competitor Dixons Carphone.

Roberts said: “Dixons Carphone has definitely responded to the threat we pose to them as a business but the reality is we continue to take share.

“We and Dixons Carphone are both continuing to grow and the market is broadly flat so there must be other people across the industry feeling some pain in that crossfire.”

Roberts also said that click-and-collect is “definitely an option for us” when it comes to small electrical appliances such as kettles or toasters.

However, he added such an initiative would not “define the success of the business”.

He concluded: “It is my belief that fundamentally the majority of the market will be transacted online in five to 10 years’ time. That gives us a huge amount of opportunity as we are the dominant player in the online market.”

Separately, this morning also held its Annual General Meeting, where 9.5% of shareholders voted against re-electing chairman Richard Rose and 12.2% voted against re-electing independent director Chris Hopkinson.