FASHION chain Quiz is shedding 93 jobs with the closure of 11 stores as part of a restructure move to offload loss-making outlets and reduce its rent bill.

The company said by taking the action it meant 822 of the 915 staff connected to the property arm will remain with the group.

The retailer moved to buy back stock and some of the assets from the Kast division on the same day it placed it in administration, for £1.3 million.

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

Blair Nimmo and Alistair McAlinden of KPMG were appointed as joint administrators of Kast by the company’s directors yesterday.

Immediately following their appointment, the administrators completed the sale of Kast’s business and the majority of its assets to Zandra, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Quiz, which is an AIM-listed omni-channel retailer, and a member of the wider Quiz Group of companies.

READ MORE: Glasgow fashion chain Quiz puts property arm in administration with 93 jobs at risk

Headquartered in Glasgow, Kast operated 82 Quiz Clothing leasehold retail stores located across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

As part of the sale, the 822 Kast employees have transferred to Zandra, with Zandra planning to operate from the majority of Kast’s former leasehold stores in the future.

Kast has been hit by falling footfall, declining average customer spend levels and rising operating costs.

The directors moved to close all of Kast’s stores with most of staff being placed on furlough in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and shortly prior to implementation of the UK Government lockdown on March 23.

To fund trading losses, Kast has received financial support from the wider Quiz Group and in recent months directors have undertaken an exhaustive process to explore options to preserve the business, including Covid-19 Government support measures, the administrators said.

Despite the extensive efforts the directors opted to place Kast into administration.

Blair Nimmo, head of restructuring for KPMG UK, said: “A combination of a highly challenging environment for bricks and mortar retailers during recent years and the Covid-19 lockdown have proven impossible for Kast to overcome.

“Despite their best efforts, the directors of Kast concluded that an administration of Kast was unavoidable.

“First and foremost, our efforts will be devoted to assisting redundant employees with claims, including supporting their interaction with relevant Government agencies.

“We are pleased to secure the sale to Zandra, as this will safeguard the Kast business, whilst protecting 822 jobs, and we wish Zandra every success for the future.”

READ MORE: Quiz issues warning on loss-making stores

Tarak Ramzan, Quiz chief executive, 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 Quiz Group’s operations.

“The significant economic uncertainty coupled with the challenging economics of operating stores on traditional leases meant that, in order to ensure a sustainable future for the Quiz Group, we had to take 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.

“The group remains confident in the relevance of the Quiz brand and its omni-channel model to deliver future sustainable growth opportunities both in the UK and internationally.”

Stores closed are Ashton-under-Lyne, Ballymena, Bradford, Chester, Cork, Ipswich, Antrim, Kirkcaldy, Oxford, Taunton and Yeovil.

Shares lifted 3.7 per cent to 7p.