Fashion retailer Quiz saw its first half group revenue drop to £17.2 million from £63.3 million in the same period in the previous year. The decline was due in part to the closure of the retailer’s stores and concessions for a number of months during the coronavirus pandemic.

In the six months to 30 September, the retailer posted an underlying EBITDA loss of £3.4 million compared to a profit of £6.3 million in the same period in the prior year.

During the period, the retailer carried out a store restructuring programme which resulted in lower rental costs and more flexible leases. This left Quiz with 55 stores in the UK and four in the Republic of Ireland at the end of the period. It has since opened five more in the UK.

Due to reduced demand for Quiz’s trademark occasion wear during the pandemic, the retailer edited its product offering to increase the number of casual ranges.

Tarak Ramzan, founder and chief executive of Quiz, said: “As with other omni-channel retailers, Quiz has faced significant challenges as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. We have taken a number of actions to protect our customers and people, preserve liquidity, and restructure the size and cost base of our store estate to adjust to the new normal of retail.

“Whilst we continue to rebalance our product offering towards more casual clothing reflecting near term customer demand, given our focus on occasion wear, demand for our products has been impacted significantly by the pandemic. However, we remain confident in the strength of our brand and are highly confident that demand for the brand’s trademark occasion wear will recover when restrictions on social events are eased.”