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Future of Quiz store in Ipswich uncertain after administrators called in

PUBLISHED: 11:26 10 June 2020 | UPDATED: 11:26 10 June 2020

Quiz stores across East Anglia face an uncertain future. Pictured: Quiz in Norwich  PICTURE: Castle Quarter

Quiz stores across East Anglia face an uncertain future. Pictured: Quiz in Norwich PICTURE: Castle Quarter

Archant

The Quiz store in Sailmakers is under threat as the fashion chain goes into a pre-pack administration.

The future of the Ipswich store will be decided within the next few weeks as the firm renegotiates its leases with landlords as part of a restructure to offload loss-making outlets and slash its rent bill.

The group said 822 of the 915 staff affected by the decision will remain with the group but that 93 jobs are at risk.

MORE: What does the future hold for Ipswich’s Carr Street?

Quiz will look to buy back the stock and some of the assets from the Kast division placed in administration for £1.3 million so it can try to renegotiate better rents with landlords on some of the stores with a view to keeping them open.

It did not disclose how many stores it would be looking to retain as part of the deal.

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A small number of job losses are expected across its head office in Glasgow and distribution centre in Bellshill near Glasgow, with others could be at risk depending on negotiations with landlords.

Quiz said its concessions and international operations are unaffected by the move.

Tarak Ramzan, chief executive of Quiz, said: “It is with deep sadness and regret for some of our colleagues and partners that we had to take this decision to restructure the group’s operations.”

He added: “Whilst we have taken pro-active actions over the past 18 months to drive footfall to our stores and renegotiate leases to improve performance, the significant economic uncertainty we now face as consumers and businesses emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic has meant that, in order to ensure a sustainable future for the group, we have taken this decision to place the subsidiary which operates our stores into administration.

“We continue to believe that stores, with appropriate property costs and flexible lease terms, can continue to be a relevant pillar in our omni-channel model and we will be seeking to re-open Quiz stores where we believe it is prudent and economic to do so.”

Quiz, which will appoint administrators KPMG to the division on Wednesday, said while the shop chain had been loss-making, it continues to see a future for an “economically viable store portfolio” alongside its online business, concessions and international arm.

It said business woes have been compounded by the lockdown, which forced the closure of all non-essential shops in the UK in late March.

The announcement comes after a tough period for Quiz, which has suffered sliding high street sales and losses due to tough retail conditions.

Retail experts have been questioning the future of Quiz in recent months as the chain battled against sliding sales and dwindling numbers of shoppers on the high street.


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